You may be wondering: Why the radio silence this week? Where’s my allergy-free menu? I NEED A PICTURE OF THE CATS! Or, just feeling a general lack of whatever presence you like to experience from this blog.
And you might be wondering. . . . . WHY!?
So here’s your answer:
We bought ourselves a house!
And so we ‘gon be real adultin’ now.
Moving this week means:
- Renting a moving truck
- Packing some more
- Giving away a lot of stuff
- Throwing away a lot of stuff
- Bribing our friends into carrying all our stuff
- Wondering ‘why the hell do we have this stuff?’
- And uh… Probably some more packing
The good news is though… by this time next week, we’ll be OFFICIALLY free of our apartment-life and starting to get used to living the house-life (and the commute-life).
Something about buying a house makes me feel reminiscent and thoughtful, so bear with me while we stroll down that road for a minute.
Here’s something you should know about me: buying a house is STRANGE to me. It feels like a huge commitment to me–bigger than getting married or wanting to have children.
That might seem weird but–Let me break it down to you in terms of numbers:
- In the past nine years, I’ve moved FOURTEEN times.
- That’s an average of 1.56 times per year! This included
- Five different states, AND
- Thirteen different physical places I’ve called “home”FUN FACT: The longest I’ve lived at one location since 2007 has been two years five months.
And… If you’re curious: only four of those fourteen moves have been the typical “go-to-college-home-dorm-home” moves.
For someone who is only (about to be) 27… I’d say that’s slightly higher than average.
So… buying a home?
That’s committing to stay in ONE place for (let’s hope) more than two years and five months. Which for me, is both comforting to consider, and also a little scary.
In my adult life so far (18+), I’ve been someone who somehow developed this pattern of not settling down anywhere for too long. Becoming someone who made “home” wherever it was I happened to land when my world stopped spinning for a minute.
But for most of it, nothing ever felt much like the home I imagined you’d find when you grew up. For much of it, I was discontented, frustrated, lonely, and lacking the stability and comfort a physical home can give someone.
Some of it, I got used to.
- I’ve become really great at packing boxes.
- I got better at asking people for help.
- I learned how to live entirely on my own for the first time in my life.
- I learned how to share spaces with people who weren’t related to me, people I didn’t always care for, and also people I loved.
- I’ve gotten really awesome at finding adventures in airports and finding the cheapest flight-paths from Michigan to California (as well as what airports to NEVER travel through).
Some of it was learning all those important “life-lessons,” too. It’s made me realize the impermanence that exists even in permanent-seeming spaces, and how to live with abstract things like that a little better. How to make friends, how to view friendship, and how to be comfortable hanging out alone, too. And I do feel like I’ve gotten better at finding “home” as “where the heart is” (as cliche as that can sound).
What is “home” anyway?
Lately, home has become the place I live with Jen. Where we snuggle with our cats. And have our friends over for dinner/TV nights, game nights, and ugly sweater parties. Home is where I sleep at night. Where I’ve learned to cook real, adult-type, meals. And where I keep my stuff. But, these things are still somehow mobile. They’ve been in handfuls of apartments, a duplex…
Now I find myself on the verge of something new–
Home becomes physically stable. Home forms a shape with a foundation. A yard. A garage. A new living-room set (!!).
Especially now that life has been considerably more stable the past few years than the handful leading up to them, it’s easier to find comfort in the thought of a home that I own, and can live in for a long stretch of time if Jen and I choose to. But it’s also scary to feel like I’m “settling roots” down in a place I never thought I’d stay for long.
Now, I’m gaining something new. I’m getting this physical stability to match the life stability I’ve been lucky enough to experience the past few years. But a physical structure can also bring with it a sense of the future.
I continually work/struggle/occasionally succeed at living in the present. My mind thinks like… ten, twenty, fifty steps ahead sometimes. This can be hard when you want to enjoy life and not worry so much about what could happen. But, as I said…. work/struggle/occasionally succeed (I like to think I’m getting better at it).
I think the part of buying a house that I’m really afraid of is what will happen if we ever do leave Michigan. I know the longer I stay, the harder it’s going to be when that day comes (which, as of now, is still in the long-term goals). And I’m not ready to leave yet, but I’m also afraid of what happens if I stay too long. What’s too long anyway? But a house brings a feeling of long.
People sometimes ask me if I miss living in California. And honestly, the only thing I really miss is being super geographically close to my family. Which leads my mind to wander onto…
The Concept of Family
This is something I’ve been realizing more and more lately. That this concept of “Family” seems to change the older I get.
At some point in our lives, I think we begin to transition away from seeing our immediate family as our parents, and our siblings. Instead, we begin to see family as our spouse, with our pets, our hypothetical children, and our shared friends who become a piece of our family picture, too.
We transition from seeing ourselves as the children of a family, and can imagine ourselves as the adults.
Let’s be honest. . . It’s scary!
When did I grow up?
How did I become responsible for filing taxes and actually understanding what “escrow ” is?
Why am I excited about Pyrex, and washers and dryers?
I’m actually saving money for RETIREMENT?
WAIT! — I’m not ready to be an adult!
But somehow–we’re forced to be ready. Somehow, when you’re now in your “late 20’s” you realize–this is happening. Life is happening. Sometimes, you want to slow it down. Rewind. But then… you realize there’s also a lot of great things that are happening, too.
I got married to a beautiful woman.
We have awesome friends.
We’re aunts, and foster-aunts.
We go to work and do meaningful things for other people.
We have great adventures.
We bought an awesome first house!
And life moves on. Life goes forward. Life comes back around in some weird disorganized-yet-organized circle, just like this blog post!
Let’s be honest–life is scary. Sometimes shitty, crazy, things happen to us. But then, a lot of really great, crazy, things happen, too. I’m excited to see what else lays ahead for us. But I’m also in no hurry, and I’m excited to enjoy all the great things happening in the present.
Anyways… Whoever you are, near or far, we love you. And we’re happy you’re a part of this journey with us!