Over the past seven months, I have had dozens and dozens of friends, family members, and acquaintances ask how the house search is going. 98% of them are genuinely asking out of love for me and Chris (the other 2% are just plain nosy, I think!). Depending on how well I know them, I thank them for asking (because I really do appreciate people who care about my life), and tell them something short and not-scary sounding, like, “It’s pretty rough and we’ve had a lot of rejection, but we’re trying to stay optimistic!”
Well, consider this post my true answer to that question, I guess…the answer I’d never give someone in real life because I don’t want to burden them with hearing all of this.
Since I wrote that last post in early March on waiting for our house, we have since looked at, put an offer in, waited a week for, and ultimately got out-bid on yet. another. house. This makes four houses total that we have “lost.” We found out last Thursday morning.
So, here we go again.
On Monday and Tuesday, we drove around a nearby city looking at potential houses. Some of these houses were downright frightening and not ever a place I would feel comfortable at home alone at night. We found one that was really cute, only to find out that it was a short sale (no way are we ever doing that again.) On Friday night, we made a list of some more potential houses in our price range in two (more suburban) towns, and spent about an hour and a half yesterday driving around to check out their locations and neighborhoods. We saw five that weren’t really creepy (sad how that’s our new criteria!) and were so excited. We came home and e-mailed our realtor late last night to ask him if he could show us the homes, only to find out this morning that all but one are already under deposit or are short sales. I can’t tell you how much I’m starting to hate the word “no.”
We were on such a “high” yesterday and so optimistic, only to come crashing down fast and hard. (The one house that’s still available is our least favorite of the five, although we’re still going to look at it, obviously.) We spent several hours this afternoon on the computer looking at houses in a town much further away than we wanted (about 30 minutes from Chris’s job and about 40 minutes from our church). We’d been holding out on this town because of how much gas is getting to be and how inconvenient it would be to live there, but I don’t think we have that luxury anymore. We compiled a list of all that were remotely affordable for us (at this point, it’s not even about whether we like the house very much).
Some of the emotions I’m currently feeling are: disappointment, anger with God, frustration, sadness, discontentment, feeling forgotten, feeling like God is leading us on, and disillusionment. Sometimes I can’t believe we left our big (to us) house and yard, our family, and friends in PA to move here….to what feels like a total dead end at times. We LOVE our new church and friends there, and we are so happy to live in New England and have family around. But if we don’t have a house, what’s the point? We didn’t come all this way and basically change every aspect of our lives only to be stuck with my parents, you know? I keep asking myself, “Why in the world would God have us come here, and make the signs so clear, only to have us stay trapped in my old bedroom for seven months and counting, with no plausible options out??”
It is a constant battle in my mind to choose to be happy and friendly and cheerful, when all I want to do is scream, cry, and throw things out windows. Sometimes I just seriously don’t even want to get out of bed in the morning. I never realized how much being a homemaker is really my identity. I mean, it’s my job AND my home-life, so to have that part of me taken away has really left a big whole with nothing to fill it.
This is putting a big stress on my marriage – each week that passes an we're still here, it gets harder and harder for both of us not to snap at each other because we’re so stressed out with worry and apprehension. We’re the only ones that truly get what the other is going through, and the only ones who can be completely honest with each other, so we end up taking stuff out on each other. Crazy, but I think that happens a lot in marriages. Chris and I are truly best friends – long before we ever started dating – and we’ve had to say “I’m sorry” more in the last few months than we ever have in all the years that we’ve known each other. We’re not in any danger of separation or anything like that at all – I want that to be extremely clear. We’re still totally in love and we’re not fighting every day or anything. I wouldn’t even really say we fight – more that we are just getting crabbier than we’ve ever been to each other. Usually we get along really, really well, so this has been out of character for us. It’s just so hard to have your marriage be an open book, living in front of 3 other adults all the time, with very little privacy afforded. Add to that aspect that we feel like we’re parenting Luke under a microscope, and you get some idea of the fishbowl it feels like we’re living in.
There are also days where I where I just feel like I can’t breathe because I feel so claustrophobic in my own space. Our bedroom is decently sized for a teenage girl (it was my bedroom growing up), but it now has to hold both Chris’s and my belongings, plus Luke’s, plus all of my sister’s stuff that she didn’t bring to college. I try so hard to keep everything neat and orderly but there’s just not enough space for everything to stay put all the time.
To top it all off, I’ve been eating sweets like it’s my day job because I get so stressed out and then realize what I have done after I’ve eaten too much. I’ve probably gained at least 3 or 4 pounds in the last month…I’m not sure exactly because I’m too afraid to get on the scale.
I think the scariest part of all is that there’s no visible end in sight. Every single time we go through the house-search process, and then put an offer in, I fall in love with the place and move myself in and get so excited to have a home again. I try so hard not to do that, but I can’t help myself – it’s like a coping mechanism, I think. Then when it inevitably crashes in front of us, it’s that much harder to pick myself back up again. I just can’t believe this keeps happening to us. All I know is that if one more person says “It’s a buyer’s market!,” I’m gonna scream.
We have looked at a number of rentals that look promising, only to find out they’re already taken (Chris heard on the radio that rental availability is at an all-time low due to the high number of foreclosures and the low number of people that can afford down payments right now). If they’re not rented within a day or two, we end up researching online and realizing that they’re right near sex offenders.
So yes, I think this pretty much sums up what I really feel like saying to people (and I know a lot of you reading this in real life, and I really DO appreciate you asking – I mean that from the bottom of my heart). I have no idea how I’d be getting through this hard part of life without people who love me and care about what’s going on. So if you’ve cared enough to ask how I’m doing, thank you – it means the world to me.
I’m not allowing comments on this post, and I’m sure I’ll lose a few followers because I sound like a crazy lunatic atheist. I think this is the most honest and real I’ve ever been here, and I just re-read this post and even scared myself a little - I’m a also a little scared to hit “publish,” although I’m gonna do it anyway. It felt so good to write out everything I was truly feeling. I am all about having an overall upbeat blog, but I also think the blogging world could use a little bit less of people-who-have-it-all-together and a little more honesty at times.
If you’ve made it to the end of this post and you would pray for us, my husband and I would so appreciate that. You have no idea how I wish I was writing posts about my new house instead of posts like this!