Hello. I’d like to invite you to take a seat on my emotional rollercoaster.
I’d planned a post about what it’s been like to sell 75% of our worldly possessions in one week. That post is still coming. But we signed all of the closing papers on our house today and, well, I’m sad.
I’m trying to document the good and bad of this journey. Most of the time, working towards this dream is thrilling. Chasing my dream has filled me with energy and hope and a genuine excitement about the future. I feel alive again. And I can really see, maybe for the first time, what a blessing life is.
There are times, like today, when the weight of the things we are sacrificing threatens to bring me down.
Just in case I make this process out to be all peaches and cream, I want to make it clear. Chasing this dream has been exhilarating, but it has not been easy. Not one step of this process has been easy.
Making the decision to even listen to my inner voice, the one that said I want to travel and write about it, was the hardest thing that I have ever done. Because all I could see at the time was the weight of the consequences that might come to pass if I listened to my inner voice. My marriage, my home, my career, my dogs, financial security, at the time I had no idea what would happen to any of those things if I said yes to that voice.
But I did say yes, eventually, after doing pretty much everything in my power not to, because I knew that if I didn’t I would be denying the thing inside of me that makes me alive. I knew that if I didn’t say yes I would spend the rest of my life half dead.
Today, many of the consequences of saying yes are still unclear. I know now that Brian supports my dream and I know that our home will be sold in order to give us the freedom to pursue my dream. But everything else? It’s still unknown.
And I guess that, in a roundabout way, brings me back to what I’m really writing about today: how it feels to sell our home. Indeed, to essentially pay someone to move into our home, filled with our furniture and the blood, sweat and tears of the hundreds of hours we’ve worked to make the place what it is. Are you on your couch? In your living room? Imagine, for a second, that you’ve just paid someone else $12,000 to erase you from the place. In return, you pack up your few remaining possessions and move into a 600 square foot apartment with your partner and your two dogs. Are you asking yourself: Is it worth it? I’m asking myself that right now. Deep down I believe that it is, but right now it feels like one hell of a sacrifice.
It is evening in Oregon and I’m laying next to the open window. A cool breeze is blowing in. Life is so nice in this house, so comfortable. There are lots of windows and the light shines through. I can play music loud and dance or yell or do whatever I want. This place is mine. Mine! And I don’t have to think of anyone else when I’m here.
Our dogs have a big backyard to run around in. They lay in the sun and nap, chase squirrels. Moving them into a tiny apartment feels cruel. I worry they won’t be happy there. I worry we won’t be happy there.
This house is filled with love and good memories of holidays and cookouts and evenings with friends. Brian proposed in the living room. At the end of bad days this house has been a refuge. This house is home. Home.
But the other day Brian told me a story.
He’d originally heard it on NPR (and if any of you know Brian you will chuckle because he is famous for repeating NPR stories word-for-word). Because I am equally famous for not remembering a goddamn thing, the only thing I recall about the story is that it was about a couple that moved throughout the world and that the reason Brian was repeating the story was because of one line he loved:
“They realized that they didn’t want to live anywhere without the other one.”
Then Brian said that no matter what happens in life, no matter where we end up, no matter what we end up doing, regardless of whatever may happen in the future, that he didn’t want to be anywhere unless I was there with him.
And I know, I know, that that is what home really is.
I know that our house is a symbol of everything we’ve built together but it isn’t everything we’ve built together. We are everything we’ve built together. Our house is just the structure that holds us all in.
But we love this place. We’ve got two weeks left here and my heart already flip-flops imagining what it will be like to pull out of our driveway for the last time.
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Next time you travel use phone cards to stay in touch with family and friends.