Eight weeks after Oliver was born, we packed up all our things and moved out of a house we absolutely adored. I was starting graduate school and He was transitioning to a new career and well, basically, we had zero dollars.
We probably could’ve scrimped and saved and lasted a few more months, but He was wise and saw that it would serve us a lot better financially, to rent out the house and find another place to live.
In a few short months we went from living in a cute, three-bedroom cottage, in a super trendy, walkable, hip, make-your-friends-jealous kind of neighborhood to a 1970’s themed two-bedroom, with green linoleum and one bathroom.
I was #firstworldproblems devastated.
Our new place had its own charms. The cherry cabinets reminded me of my Grandma Mim’s house and the breakfast bar was sort of an excellent spot for drinking coffee in the morning. But the floors creaked and none of the doors would close all the way. There were bugs and weird sounds coming from the basement. I had to walk up 20 stone steps to bring my groceries inside and our bedroom was in a converted den.
I wished desperately to be back in our little cottage with friends close by and a coffee shop within walking distance. I complained about our bad fortune and wished away the days so that we could move on to something better. We could never really start our life if we were living in this house.
But as it somehow always does, time went on – and the house became our home. We spent Christmases, birthdays, Halloweens and summer days there. We tore out the carpet and hung up pictures. We folded laundry and took bubble baths. We laughed at bad movies and had Friday night pizza with incredible neighbors. We watched Oliver learn how to walk and brought Archie home from the hospital. The green linoleum stayed green and the bathroom tile stayed pink, but they softened beneath the life that happened around them.
On Sunday, we put an offer in on a new house. It didn’t get accepted and again, I felt that same devastation from four years ago.
I don’t want to live in a house where the floors creak and the doors won’t close and there are bugs and weird sounds coming from the basement and I have to walk up 20 stone steps to bring in the groceries and our bedroom is a converted den!
But then I realized, that I don’t live in that house. I live in our home. And it will be here long after we’ve moved on, running through my mind as the place where we spent those early Christmases, birthdays, Halloweens and summer days. Where we tore out the carpet at 2am and hung up pictures behind the first piece of furniture we bought together. Where we folded itty-bitty laundry and our kids took noisy bubble baths. Where we laughed at bad movies after the kids were asleep and had Friday night pizza with those same incredible neighbors. And where we watched our children grow from babies to boys.
It may not be the perfect house, but it’s a very, very, very fine home.