Category Archives: Moving

Falling Forward

And just like the wheel is turning forward again. More baby steps into the great unknown…

I gave myself until November 1st to have a down payment ready for a house. After saving my butt off for the past two months, and venting to my sister that I can’t wait for time to speed up one night, she graciously offered me a “gift” of the rest of my down payment (and that I can pay her back as it makes sense).

Uh, what? Just like that my little sis is ready to write me a check. I would have never asked her for money like that ever. She’s the little sister. I’m the big sister. I hinted at it to my mom, and to my dad, but they didn’t bite…but I was simply whining to her, not asking for a hand out.

I took it, with full intention of continuing to save my butt off so that I can pay her back sooner than later. And just like that I was pre-approved this weekend to buy my own adult house.

The house hunting has yet to begin. That likely starts this weekend. I’m full of all kinds of emotions – excited for sure, a little scared (I’ve never owned a home on my own), and just a tiny bit anxious about the market and the pressure and the stress. I’m in a good place with my stress level in life. I want this to be good stress. I don’t want to settle. I want to make a good decision for me and my kids. I’ve been “homeless” (okay, a 40-year old living with her parents) for the past 1 year and 1 month. The time has come.

I’ve come so far. I can’t give up now. “Life’s a journey, not a destination”… yea yea, I know, but getting a nice cozy comfortable home where I can be me (and my kids can be them) is somewhat of a destination for me. It’s a destination of a new beginning. It’ll be proof to myself that I broke the cycle of bad decisions (or lack thereof) and that I’ll be living for myself, finally.

It’s the first day of fall, and I’m falling forward… It’s my own movement that will take me to where I need to be.

Stifle Me Not

The In Between of What Has Been and What Could Be

I’ve been feeling sorry for myself lately. I’m not sure why exactly. I can only describe it as missing where I no longer am even though I didn’t like where I was back then, and wishing I was somewhere else.

How stupid is that?

So freakin’ stupid.

I’m simultaneously living in the past and wishing my life away.

It’s like I miss my old life and am excited for a new one all at the same time. And I can’t make the new life come any faster without disrupting the present, and memories of my past just keep flooding back and I have to fight off the urge to sink back into the abyss of what no longer serves me. I keep having to remind myself that I’ve been rebuilding myself from my own personal ground zero for almost 2 years now. I don’t think anyone without super powers loses their own personal everything and just gets right back up again.

I’m (im)patiently trying to save for a house. I have a plan, I’m saving according to my budget. And, I’m bored. I’m so freakin’ BORED!

You’d think boredom would be the least of my worries as a single divorced working mom of two. But the restlessness of what has been and what could be are colliding into a cloud of dust, making it hard to see through what I already know. Even if what I know is that the unknown has more potential to be better than anything I’ve ever known before.

I’ve cut myself off from shopping sprees and filling the grocery cart with whatever goodies I want. Or going out with friends whenever I want (well, I don’t have many friends, so who cares). I’m on a strict budget for the next 8 1/2 weeks. I have a countdown app on my phone. Goal: I’m going to be ready to be pre-approved for my own big girl house by November 1st.

If I can’t save a shit-ton of money in the next 8 1/2 weeks, then I have learned nothing in the past 2 years. I have been forced to live on a minuscule budget on unemployment for months at a time.. I know how shop for the bare minimum and make ends meet with gas and groceries. I know how to forego the extras on my debit card. I know how to be bored and entertain myself with a WIFI connection or even just a pen and paper. I feel like I’ve been training for this speed budget plan all my life and I can’t give up now.

Why now? Why not a few months ago? Well, a few months ago, I finally got a job. I finally got to buy myself some basic clothes that fit me. I finally got to spoil my kids a little bit. I finally got to taste the fruits of my hard labor from switching careers. Now, it’s now or never. I can live with my parents for months and months more and save slowly, or I can speed save and get the f*&k out.

We’re all sick of each other. No one is saying it. No one is at each other’s throats. You can just feel that it’s time. My kids know it’s time. If I can get pre-approved by Nov 1, I could be moved into my own little piece of heaven by Christmas. A girl can dream.

Stifle Me Not

 

 

 

Gifts Coming Full Circle

This week I talked to a mortgage broker and we made a plan for when it realistically makes sense for me to get pre-approved to buy a home. I could do it now, but I have a few more things to clean up before I go that route. The daily life of living at my parents’ house has not been unbearable. I have the patience and the will power to hold out a bit longer. I have a feeling the payoff will be rewarding. That feeling usually serves me well.

In the meantime, I refinanced my car this week. I asked the mortgage broker to refer me to someone that does car loans. He referred me to a friend of his at a local bank to refinance my car at a good rate. I had to get my ex’s name off of my car loan. When I scheduled the meeting to go sign the closing paperwork, I found out that my first payment isn’t until mid-November (more money to save for a house!) and I got a YETI cooler as a gift. I had no idea about these perks, but it was a welcome surprise.

Now, I’m not here being paid to endorse YETI, but as an owner of this brand’s coffee cup, I will say that I am a fan. I love keeping my hot drinks hot and my cold drinks cold. This brand figured it out and makes quality products in my opinion.

But this situation with the YETI cooler is a bit ironic.

Let me explain.

After being together for 18 years, and married for 11, I found myself becoming increasingly stressed when it came to birthdays, Father’s day, and Christmas gifts for my ex. I have a problem with giving, and over-giving. I give too much of myself and never expect  anything in return. Even if I do expect it, I don’t express my disappointment if I don’t get it. I make excuses for others and go about my business secretly unhappy. My ex knew that. I just figured it out in the last few years. Smart manipulating guy. Naive me (I was too busy thinking of others)… but not anymore.

So one of the last time’s I was stressing about getting him a gift (I think it was his birthday in 2017), I considered getting him the exact YETI cooler (that I just received as a gift for my car loan). Giving big nice gifts had become my thing. I felt like every year I was trying to outdo the last gift that I gave. But each time I would surprise myself and think of something even grander that he would love. And he did, he loved all of it. Well that year I looked into buying him a YETI cooler, and I was about to buy it. I had it picked out and was about to buy it online. But I didn’t. Something was off. I just thought  I shouldn’t spend so much money that year for some reason. Again, a little later I was at a sporting goods store and had the YETI right in front of me and almost bought it. Again, something was off. I don’t remember what gift I ended up getting him, but it wasn’t that. And I wasn’t excited by his reaction when he opened whatever it was that I bought, but I didn’t care for some reason.

I remember thinking later that I’d wished I had gotten the cooler because I wanted it. But whatever, I figured I’d just saved some money and moved on with life.

So now here I am in present day, and I’m relieved that I didn’t buy that damn cooler and listened to my gut. That small little whisper that says “hey, you, what are you doing?”… that little nagging thought that is surrounded by question marks and a weird feeling in your belly…

I recently listened to it again when that asshole was trying to talk me out of buying a home where I’m presently looking. And instead of giving into my frets about him trying to sway my decisions, I called a mortgage broker, which led me to the place where I refinanced my car, which led to my own free YETI cooler and more money for me to save toward my future home.

I’m going to buy a great home, and I’m going to throw a house-warming party with lots of ice and drinks in my YETI cooler.

I’d say this wasn’t just some coincidence. I see you God and your universe angels, quietly looking out for me. My eyes are wide open.

Thank for these gifts that promise cold drinks and peace of mind.

Stifle Me Not

Fretting No Longer

I’ve been fretting a little bit. It’s my own fault. I fret… due to others. It’s this problem of mine that I’ve been trying to rid myself of for quite some time. It’s why my life had to get worse before it got better.

My ex must be bored and overthinking himself to death because he’s slowly surfaced (outside of when he’s interfacing with the kids) and managed to worm his way into an unprotected part of my brain. I’ve been working on this brain of mine. I really have. It’s just that, when I least expect it, old habits die hard and I let that muther-effer get the best of a mini part of my brain. That is all it takes, and it has quite honestly ruined my week.

It’s like he knows when I’m even thinking about doing something different. We’re connected in that way. I always used to know what he was thinking or about to do or say before he did. It was endearing and annoying and quite sabotaging all at the same time.

I’ve been in my parents house with my kids for almost a year now. They are healthy and happy and love their schools. We’ve started seeing new doctors here. I’ve established myself into my new career and job. I don’t think it’s a toxic work environment and it’s certainly not a dead end job of the past. We now live here. Happily.

So with this promise of future income, I’ve been “unofficially” searching for homes the past few weeks, which consists of browsing realtor.com and doing a drive-by when time allows. But lately I’ve had the urge to make the leap to mortgage land.

Earlier this week, my ex sends me a text that he’d like to “talk” to me before I shop for a new home. I text back that nothing is official yet and I’m just browsing. He responds again that he just wants to “talk”.

Do you know what that’s code for? That’s code for he wants to talk me out of buying a house that isn’t conveniently located near him to access the kids whenever he damn well pleases.

I have no support system up north by him. He is a firefighter, so when he’s working (which is often), I have no one to help out me and my kids. He has as much access to our kids as he wants right now – no matter the hour distance. We each drive half-way to meet up when we exchange the kids. Post-divorce control mechanisms have no part in my life now, or ever. However, he apparently thinks that he can even pull it off.

I simply responded to his text, “ok”… and in my head I was a wreck for the rest of the week. I’ve been waiting for him to text back and demand talking to me. I’ve been dreading this damn talk. I’ve been trying to come up with what words I’d say and not say so that I wouldn’t piss him off.

His text was on Tuesday. Today is Sunday. It took me more than 5 days to realize that I don’t have to talk to him about my future living arrangements. It’s not like I’m trying to move out of the country. I’m in the same area I’ve always been, it would just be in my own home. And that kills him. He doesn’t want me to succeed. He wants to control me.

I’m my own person, with my own thoughts, and my own free will. I’m not a bad person. I’m not insane (as I’ve told time and time again for years and years … “you’re insane!”). I’m doing what’s best for my kids. They aren’t being put into bad situations and they see their dad regularly. This is better for them than me living with him and ending up mentally ill from not being able to acknowledge the reality of being in a painful relationship with him. I’m doing what’s right and good. He’s trying to control me. He’s a narcissist. He’s gas-lighting me as he’s done dozens upon dozens of times before.

So I have not talked to him. I sent an email to a mortgage broker instead. 

Stifle Me Not.

Adjusting

I made it to the other side. The move was successful. We all got situated this past week. We’re all slowly figuring out our new normal. My daughter started school last week and my son started preschool today. There have been some frustrations of course, but things could always be worse.

I now find myself in a quiet house drinking decaf and wondering if I should continue to go down the path that hasn’t been working for me (trying to search for a job in my current career field) or try a new path. I’m considering some certification programs at a nearby college. I’m educated, but I may need something new to move me forward. I don’t want to make any hasty decisions, but I also don’t want to be sitting here drinking decaf by myself 6 months from now.

It’s been a little challenging trying to adjust to living under someone else’s roof and rules. I very much miss having my own space and being the one to call the shots. I feel like a child again having to adjust to / tip toe around some of my dad’s rules, ways, beliefs, etc. And I feel intrusive that my children and I have taken over the place. It’s not horrible, but I know my dad and stepmom aren’t in their quiet happy bubble of joy that they’re used to.

So I guess I’ll take the next few days to figure out what the heck I should do with my future. The rat race has ended and now I have all of this time. Once upon a time, I wished for nothing but more TIME, and here I have it. I must use it wisely.

Stifle Me Not

Ready or Not

This week has been surreal. And busy. So busy. It helps distract from the greatness of preparing to move and all the change. So much change.

This morning is my last chance to take a breather, finish my coffee, and focus on the final round of packing. In two days, movers will be stomping through my house, looking at me expectantly for their next order. I have the boxes labeled and categorized in difference corners of the house. I am running the last load of the dishwasher and laundry. I never realized how many clothes I had until I was forced to pack my entire wardrobe into a couple of suitcases and bins. And my shoe collection is insane. How is it that I only wear a few pairs of them consistently?

In the midst of all this packing, I’m actually getting called about jobs. One employer even invited me for a live interview next week. Moving, divorcing, continuing to raise two kids, and looking for a new job all at the same time. Challenging, but its happening so I’ll go with it.

My dogs are moving in with my neighbor for the next seven weeks. I groomed both of them and have their boxes of belongings packed. Poor pooches. I know they will be fine, but I feel like I’m deserting them.

I haven’t cried in like two days, so that is good. At first I was getting all sentimental and counting the number of “sleeps” I have left to wake up with my pups, and how I’ll miss my big bathroom, and how I love sitting in my sun room drinking coffee in the  morning…  and quite honestly, that just makes this whole thing harder. So I gave myself a pep talk that my dogs are going to the next best place without their current owners, I’ll still miss my big bathroom (it is wonderful), and I cluttered up my sun room with boxes so that I can’t sit back there and let my mind wander to the past. It’s time to move forward.

Ready or not, here I keep going.

Stifle Me Not