I’ve been pretty MIA from everything (social media, friendships, the blog, society in general) for the last few months. I’ve had friends reach out to ask if I’m okay and my Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter feeds have grown weak.
I’ve been so busy because we bought a house!
It’s exciting, yes, but it has also been very stressful. I’d be lying if I said it was easy. Like a lot of life transitions you think will be strictly joyous and fun (lookin’ at you people who have had graduations, weddings, babies, etc.) the process at some point just became a massive list of neverending things to do.
Phone calls to make, appointments to schedule, plans to make for moving, unpacking, and settling into a new city. And as if being a first-time homeowner wasn’t scary enough, the day after our closing we discovered water damage that was a result of a major mistake on the builder’s part. It was devastating and frustrating. Our brand new house went from move-in ready right back to a construction site less than 24 hours after getting the keys.
Our move date had to be pushed, mold remediation began, and negotiations with the builder had to be made to compensate us for all the trouble. My anxiety got the best of me for weeks and though I managed to get what I needed to get done on the house (painting, transferring utilities, constant back and forth calls with the builder to fix the mold problem, moving, and more) I struggled to work consistently and maintain a sense of organization in my life that would help me feel settled and safe. I wasn’t sleeping well, was crying all the time, and to be perfectly honest wondered why we’d made the leap at all.
This week will be six weeks that we’ve owned the house and three weeks since we’ve lived in it. I’m happy to report things are looking up. We’re nearly done unpacking (don’t @ me if you’re one of those who unpacks in like a day, I don’t need that judgment in my life right now) and I am getting back to a normal work schedule. Most importantly I’m remembering why I wanted a house to begin with.
When I see the dogs run in the yard, my heart swells. When Mitch and I had a water fight with the hose after planting yesterday, I stood there dripping wet saying, “This is why we did this.” And when I look out my office window at the newly planted herb garden, I imagine all the days of writing that will be spent at this window and all the homecooked meals I’ll make with these herbs in my brand new, big kitchen.
It’s nice to remember these things, because the work is not done and I don’t know that it ever will be. They say it takes years to make a house a home and I truly understand that now. I feel like in the meantime it’s about recognizing these moments of joy when they come and holding them close for as long as I can. That and having gratitude for our families who have rallied to help make things feel more and more like home every week.
Despite these happy realizations, I still feel like I’m reeling. I still feel like I need time to adjust to this new space, this new life, this new set of big responsibilities.
I’m giving myself time to focus on me, my relationship, and my home right now. Maybe it’s okay if that means I’m a bit off the radar for a while.