Today’s the day we’re supposed to officially be ‘on the road again’ but it’s not going to happen. My husband found more issues with the trailer we purchased, so we ordered parts through Amazon but Amazon wasn’t able to get them to us in time to meet what we originally had planned for our ‘exit strategy’. I’m relieved because it’s buying us more time and giving us another day to finalize everything and get the house ‘squeaky’ clean. Upon returning home (after visiting my family and our daughter), I discovered that there was a great deal more to be done than I initially thought. Most of the rooms are cleaned out but the kitchen’s another matter. We’ve still got a long ways to go before it’s presentable, despite my efforts to make a dent today. I think I’m going to look forward to a smaller house because it won’t take nearly as long to clean it. It shouldn’t take two days to clean one kitchen! At least, the ‘packing’ portion of our move is complete. It was a job to put all of our belongings into boxes and then load them onto crates. I downsized as much as time would allow, but I’m certain that I’ll be downsizing even more once we arrive at our new home and begin to unpack.
When on earth we’ll arrive at our new home and where it will be is a complete mystery. The real estate market is so nutty right now that it can take months to find anything affordable. It’s great for sellers but not for buyers. Our grand plan was to live with my father-in-law and take our time looking for a home that checked off all or most of the boxes on our ‘wish list’ and was within our budget, however, that expectation changed as of yesterday. Sad to say, but my husband’s stepmom passed away at three o’clock in the morning. She didn’t even last a month once she was placed in a memory care facility. My husband can’t believe she’s gone and he’s really struggling. Even though she and I didn’t get along, she was always good to my husband. He mentioned to our daughter yesterday that when he was growing up, when his father would get drunk and violent and want to use him as a punching bag, his stepmom would step between them in order to protect him. Maybe she and I didn’t get along, but I’m glad (and admire the fact) that she looked out for my husband even though he wasn’t her biological child.
It is really strange to think that she’s gone. When we went to visit in May/June, I never would have imagined that three or four months later we’d be attending her funeral. Her mind was completely gone and she’d resorted to carrying on lively conversations with dolls, but she was still quite spry and capable (physically). I think after she fell and broke her hip after only being in the facility for a week, she gave up the will to live. My father-in-law is guilt-ridden that he placed her there but he couldn’t continue to care for her, it was a burden he could no longer bear. As it was, she was falling multiple times while residing in their home, so it was only a matter of time before some significant injury occurred. I feel sorry for him because he’s experienced so much loss in the last 5 years. His youngest son died 5 years ago this November, and then his brother (who he was extremely close to) died this summer, and now he’s lost his wife. All that remains is his son, my husband, and he has emphasized several times that he wants us to take our time driving and not drive tired because he cannot withstand another loss.
Once we arrive, as I mentioned a couple of paragraphs back, I’m not sure what our living situation will be. My husband’s father had said that once his wife passed away, he was going to sell the house and move into an apartment. I’m not sure how long that’ll take, but if he prices it right, he can get a contract on it immediately. He wanted us to buy the house but I don’t like it, even though it’s a brick home and built solid (no big bad wolf is going to blow it down). The layout doesn’t make any sense and it’s not energy efficient at all. When he told us what his utilities run each month, I about fell over. The house needs a complete overhaul, too. It still has the original single-pane windows throughout and original bright green tub, toilet, and sink in the main bathroom and original pink fixtures in the master bathroom. Also, I cannot overlook the fact that the home itself holds too many unpleasant memories from the past. There’s so much emotional pain associated with that brick and mortar that the idea of permanently living in that space does not interest me in the slightest.
I don’t even want to live in that city, to be honest, but my husband continues to look up homes there, regardless. Ugh. I’ve been clear about my desire to live nearly anywhere else (because I don’t wish to live amongst all of the ‘ghosts’), however, nearly each time I walk into a room and glance over when he’s using the computer, he’s got a home pulled up in the ‘No Zone’ on Zillow or Realtor.com. “You weren’t supposed to see!” he’ll blurt out when he notices me approaching. “Why?!” I’ll ask, when I observe the location on the monitor. Do you want to know what he tells me? He’ll either say, “If you allow people to affect where you choose to live, you’re giving them power over you,” or he’ll say, “It’ll make you stronger.” I’d like to be stronger but not if it means I have to face all of my demons or ghosts in one fell swoop. I was counting them up in my head today and it made me dizzy. Even though he’s probably right, I’d prefer to start with a clean slate (elsewhere) rather than return to the scene of the crime. I’m just not prepared to go head-to-head or toe-to-toe with demons or ghosts from my past right now. Maybe in time I will be, but not before I’m able to get a few more years of therapy under my belt (to work through my sh*t).
Geez. Why is this blog taking so long to write? I need to go to bed and get some rest! We’ve got a meeting in the morning with a representative at the title company in order to sign all of our closing documents, and I also need to finish cleaning the house and loading up the car with all of the random piles of ‘stuff’ that are strewn everywhere. I’ve got the dog staying with the dog boarder until we officially leave, which has made life much easier, but with or without the dog, I’ve got a lot to do between now and then. I have floors to sweep and vacuum and mop, shelves to dust, drawers to vacuum out, refrigerators to clean, windows to wash (seriously, what is with all of the dog snot??!!), toilets and tubs to scrub, chrome to polish, counters to wipe, cobwebs to vanquish, and so on and so forth. Fortunately, I hauled a bunch of frozen food over to my brother’s and had him divvy it up with my daughter, so there’s not much left ‘lingering’ in either one of the refrigerators/freezers. As much as I’m not looking forward to that tomorrow, I am very much looking forward to a farewell lunch with my dear, dear friend (who moved here the exact same month and year I did).
What I find fascinating is that when I told her that we were putting our house on the market, she and her husband got ‘the fever’, too. She’s been busily packing boxes and getting her home ready to list while her husband continues to work, trying to keep a continual stream of income coming their way. Just like us, her hope is to get enough cash from the sale to be able to buy a house (in another state) outright/free and clear. For her sake, I hope she does. Since I’ve known her, she’s lived ‘hand to mouth’. It’d be really wonderful if she was free of a mortgage payment and didn’t feel so strapped all of the time. I’ve experienced that more than my fair share and I hate the feeling. If anything’s going to keep me up at night, it’s wondering how I’m going to come up with the money to pay the bills. I think when I was the most desperate, I resorted to selling my plasma. That was a real low point in my life. I also looked into selling my ‘eggs’, but my age and mental health (history) eliminated me as a candidate.
With everything I need to take care of tomorrow, I really should head to bed. My husband went to bed at least 4 hours ago and has managed to fell half a forest within that timeframe. Poor guy. If anyone needs rest, it’s him. He’s so exhausted. Once we reach our destination, he’ll finally be able to take an honest-to-goodness, long-awaited break. I wouldn’t be surprised if, once his head hits the pillow at his dad’s house, he sleeps for 24 hours straight! I’ve never seen that man work so hard (aside from the period of time right after we purchased our home) and he deserves some proper R&R. I sure could use some, too. I’m not a young chick anymore, and all of this time devoted to getting the house ready and moving has worn me out. I think a Swedish massage would do wonders, therefore, I have plans on checking out Groupon for local deals or returning to the massage school I went to previously (as a client) for budget massages. Before any of that can take place, however, we need to get ‘there’ (our new home). I dread driving for three days straight but I’m sure it’ll be over before I know it. Anyway, I’d better go. Have a fabulous day/night, and I hope you stop by again soon!