Monday, May 26, 2008

Nothin' but the truth

Note: this post was written over the weekend. We're in the thick of moving and appreciate your th0ughts and prayers! I'll check in when I can.

Friday evening was the last night in our house for just Eric, Nathan and me, since my parents arrived Saturday night. I made one of our favorite meals for dinner, calzones, and it was cold enough outside that Eric built a fire so we could enjoy that once more. We reminisced about the house (Eric lived here for several years as a bachelor and had a smattering of roommates during that time) and prayed for the family who will move in soon. As someone who needs and appreciates closure, I really appreciated this special time.

I was really antsy Saturday. The owners of our new house had until 7 p.m. to be moved out, and they said they'd call when they were done. (An unusual set-up, I know, but it's a small town and we were OK with it.) I left plenty of projects for Saturday, so that I couldn't be too restless.

Shortly after returning from the grocery store that morning, there was a knock at our door. It was the owner, saying they were done moving out--and it was just 10:00! I was so excited. Eric and Nathan were out on a walk at the time, so I kept looking out the window as I worked in the kitchen. Naturally, I had just put bread in the oven, so we had to wait until that was done before we could head over. (Remember, we're just moving a block away!)

I was full of anticipation as we walked to our new home. But it was not quite the homecoming I imagined. For starters, the previous owners had left a fair amount of rotten wood and various debris in the garage, attic and basement. Then, seeing the house empty for the first time made me feel overwhelmed, rather than the excitement I had expected. Nathan fussed the whole time we were at the house, getting into things he shouldn't and then throwing fits when he was directed elsewhere. To top it off, Eric and I were not on the same page about where a certain project should fall on the priority list.

Sigh. Perhaps none of this sounds like a big deal, or maybe I'm coming across overly dramatic. But as I promised in the post title, I'm telling nothin' but the truth. It was not a fun visit. I left the (new) house in tears and bee-lined it back to my safe haven, the home which is familiar to me.

Eric assured me we'll take things one step at a time. When it comes to moving and home ownership, I admit I feel in over my head (makes me think of that song by The Fray--love it!) Can anyone else relate? How did you feel when you saw your house for the first time as an owner?


Lisa said...

We built our first home so it was a very different experience for us. I remember not being aboe to sleep through the night the first few nghts. I had lived in the same apartment for 10 years so my brand new house felt very strange at first.

We have been here now for 3 years and it feels like we have been here forever. I am hoping that my first home will be my forever home. I hope to not have to move again. We will see though.

Prayers are going up right now for a peaceful moving experience.

Amy said...

I will be honest here, I was disappointed. My husband moved here and worked for a month before we were able to move out (waiting on our house to sell). He actually picked out the house and said this was the best he could do in my tight budget constraints. It was so ugly and I could not even see the good bones on it. I felt incredibly overwhelmed and wished that I had been part of the buying process.

Each day though, it is a little less overwhelming and becomes more a part of us. Each project you will complete will make you feel like you own it and will make you love it a little more.

Sending you lots of hugs!!

Angela - Life w/ One Busy Boy said...

When we went to move into our first house the previous owners were still there and hardly had anything moved out. We ended up helping them move out only to find out later that they left everything in the attic, fridge, etc. As soon as we met the new neighbors they told us the reason the people moved is because the husband had committed suicide there - which was not a material fact they had to tell us. Long story no longer seemed like my dream house I had anticipated for so long. But it did turn out into a wonderful home for us. It just took us painting and making it our home and no longer theirs. Hang in will come with time. Change is hard. Praying for you!!

Jenn said...

I cried and didn't want to get my ex's grandparents home even if it was cheap it was awful, but I was only 20 and we had a baby so we needed something instead of renting ! We totally redid it and sold it a few years and two more kids later for 84,000 and we only paid 16,000 so that was good ,then we built a new home that I loved and then we got divorced so I get remarried a few years later and we go looking in this new place I moved to and we looked at 20 homes and we finally found a nice new one but it was small so then when we found out we were having a baby the search was on for a bigger home 35 houses later and we have to pick something since someone was buying ours and we get this house . I cried and was very pregnant at the time, we had to rip all the floors out and get new and paint every room and put all new lights in. We did all that had the baby and still need to redo the two bathrooms and the kitchen it still makes me want to cry! So I understand how you felt. I hope things go better for you in the next few days.

MyHeartIsAlwaysHome said...

I was okay when we were first at our home. It was several days later when we were in the thick of removing tons of wallpaper and ripping up disgusting carpet that I hit my low point. I thought what have we gotten into. I had a good cry or two or three along the way. Prayed. Took each project one at a time and we made it. I know you will too! Hang in there Carrie!

mer said...

Well...the raspberry sherbert paint and the metallic rose wallpaper was enough to make me cry! I felt overwhelmed too, but once our "things" were in it, it began to feel like home. A lot of paint helped too!

I'm sorry your experience was disappointing. I think we often over-romanticize the big moments of our lives. It's lovely when they play out that way, but honestly, most of the big moments of my life haven't lived up to the hype!

Tracy said...

It IS overwhelming. When we moved into our second home, I was pregnant with my 3rd child. The other two were 3 and 18 months. It was an older house. The couple took their gas stove, and had the gas company shut off the gas when it was disconnected. We had to wait until Monday to cook, and have hot water. I cried. And cried.

kristin said...

I have been praying for you and Eric in this transition, especially this weekend! It sounds like it has had some bumps in the road, but I'm so thankful you have some helping hands there this week to get some good progress made. Just remember, it won't all happen in a week, or a month... Hang in there and we are praying for you!


Susan said...

Change is a huge deal and we have so many expectations. I was overwhelmed when I came to my first apartment in Germany and couldn't flush the toilet and turn on the TV because the system was different. Boy I cried the first night in frustration and overwhelmed. You know I was just married, left everything in US etc...

As the girls above commented, one step at a time. In time it will feel natural. You can do this!!! Praying for you. I think with your parents there, you are feeling much stronger.

Linds said...

I think what your feeling is totally normal! I get so overwhelmed with change sometimes even if it's a good change. It's almost like it takes my mind and emotions a little while to catch up to reality.

I was very excited when we found our home but it was a totally different experience when moved in, it was empty and it wasn't ours. Technically it was but it was just a house. When we were able to really make it our home (and continue to make it our home) we love it more and more.

I hope the weekend went better for you.


A, B & C said...


I know just how you feel. We moved into this place in Rome after only seeing pictures, and we moved into our place in Paris sight unseen. It's so hard when you move into a place envisioning something different than reality.

After 10 moves in my life (4 as an adult), I have some sure ways to make you feel better. Take at least one hour each day to find your favorite knick-knacks and pictures to put on end tables and other furniture. Your own personal touches make it feel like your place! I would also make a point of hanging pictures and getting curtains up (even just temporary ones) by the end of the first week. These two things do an amazing job of making any place feel like home!

I promise, it gets better! We had some real issues here, especially with space for the new baby and noisy neighbors. But with some creative reorganizing and some long talks with the family upstairs, we really feel at home here!

Rebecca said...

We circled the block waiting for the sellers to leave (similiar situation to yours) when they finally pulled away, we pulled in. When I went into the dark, empty house, I thought, "I've just made the biggest mistake of my life!" Of course it wasn't. Just needed a good cleaning and my stuff!! Blessing to you and your family, Carrie. Your new house is so cute. You'll love it.

Anonymous said...

A new home is overwhelming especially when lots of projects are on the list. When my husband and I moved into our new home we prayed in the empty rooms before we started to get settled. This seemed to help put things in prospective. Once you clean and begin to put things away the projects become less overwhelming and you are able to call your new house a home.

Melissa (Monica's friend)

Ewokgirl said...

For me it was very exciting to move into our house. I arrived before Steven or the movers. As I had the cat with me and all was quiet, I opened his carrier to let him out, and he was such a blast to watch. He raced from window to window, just so excited about his new view!

But, if we'd walked in and found a bunch of garbage and debris left behind, I would have been feeling just as you are. It's a very emotional time for anyone, but especially for us women. Once you get your own things in there, I'm pretty sure you'll feel a lot better.

Jamie said...

:-) Just remember you have to start somewhere! When we moved in our house was a mess...our first night here we didn't even sleep in the bedroom. It was just not ready for anyone to sleep in! We had to sleep on a mattress on the floor in our office! Not quite what you picture but I'll never forget it and really cherish the memory now. I'm sure we won't live in this house forever but I think I'll miss certain things about it even when we move a step up someday! As Amy said, each project will make you grow to love it a little more (though sometimes during the projects you might not feel that way!)