June 5 Editorial

This week my husband and I experienced yet another milestone in becoming grownups as we placed our first home on the market so that we can pursue our dream of waterfront living. Excited by the hope of soon living the true Florida lifestyle, I never expected to have such mixed emotions about leaving the home that literally bears our blood, sweat, and tears.
We purchased our first home just two and a half years ago when the buyer’s market was so enticing, we couldn’t pass up an opportunity to get in while the “getting” was good. We found a foreclosure with tons of potential in a great neighborhood for next to nothing. It was a no brainer.
We put in an offer just before the holidays, which was quickly accepted, and started packing in a whirlwind as we prepared to close in just 30 days. Those days came and went as we missed not one, two, or three closing dates, but four. We were getting the run around from banks on both sides, claiming that the paperwork wasn’t being completed due to the holidays.
With thousands of dollar’s worth of renovations to complete before move-in, our window of construction was closing....fast. We finally closed 28 days before we had to be out of our rental, so we went to work at warp speed.
We ripped out walls, had all the electrical redone, tore out all the flooring, and revamped the bathrooms, just to name a few of the projects. We worked 16 hour days, doing most of the work ourselves to save money, for 27 days straight. Then, as I went into full meltdown mode, the last of the hardwood floors went in about 6 hours before our keys were due to be turned in on our old house. I don’t know how we did it and survived, but we did.
Since then, we’ve laughed and cried a lot in this house. We’ve nearly gotten divorced, fallen in love again, lost our fur baby, adopted new fur babies, discussed my husband going back to school to further his career, and even discussed starting a family. Today, as I looked at our MLS listing, it hit me. Our life has happened here.
We never intended to stay here forever. In fact, the whole plan was to renovate this house and flip it to make some money. (A sure fire sign that we watch too much HGTV.) I never intended to discover that within these walls lies the story of us. I must admit, I got a little misty eyed. Then I had my normal response which is to have a panic attack followed by deep feelings of doom followed by remorse followed by acceptance.
Thanks to having to show the house, it’s never been cleaner which makes me like it even more, but I have to keep reminding myself that we are moving to a better place. A place where I can sip a margarita at sunset with my toes in the sand and still go inside to use my own restroom when my terrible IBS symptoms rear their ugly head. If you know what I’m talking about then you already know…..there really is no place like home. Can I get an Amen?
As I look around, I see us in every corner of this house. I remember fighting at Lowe’s over paint colors. I remember screaming like a maniac then laughing hysterically when we installed the new sink and water blew out of the faucet like a geyser because we didn’t have a clue what we were doing. I remember the moment sitting on the couch looking at my husband realizing that I may not have always made the right decisions, but when it comes to him I know I made at least one.
It will be hard to leave, but in order to grow you have to take a leap into the unknown. Sometimes you might fall, and sometimes you might have regrets, but as long as you have those that love you the most beside you it doesn’t even matter. At the end of the day, a house is just a house. I know that wherever we go together will be home….and I’m going to have a sweet tan.