June 14, 2007

Walls

I know all about buyer's remorse...but have you ever heard of seller's remorse? The reason I ask? Last night, Beth and I signed our names in several dozen times and officially put our house up for sale. As much as I want a new house, someplace we can continue to grow, the whole thing makes me a little sad.

This is our first house. It's our magnolia house; the giant magnolia tree out front was planted way too close to the house but it fills Mia's window with blossoms every summer. We moved here, planted our stuff and our family and watched them grow. We painted and labored and made it our house. Our home. We argued here, we made up here and, most importantly, we loved here. We got pregnant here and brought Mia home to this house when she was born. Mia crawled here for the first time. She stood, fell down, and tried again here. She took her first steps and said her first words within these walls.

Yes, these are just walls - lumber, drywall and nails - but they surround more than just things. I'll miss them.

For the past week, Mia's been restless. She's resisted sleep and seems slightly on-edge. After doing a little thinking, my gut told me she was reacting to the activity, picking up on the fact that a change was coming. So she and I had a talk.

Me: Mia, do you want a new house?
Mia: Yes.
Me: Do you want a nice new room?
Mia: Yes.
Me: We're all going to be together through everything.
Mia: Mommy and daddy.
Me: And Mia. Mommy and daddy and Mia always make home.

We're bound for bigger and better things but, regardless of that, home will always be wherever my girls and I are.

That said, that doesn't negate the hope that this place sells faster than Lindsay Lohan on a line of coke.

Posted by Chris at June 14, 2007 7:28 AM
Comments

For the reasons you mention (and more), I too fear the day that we outgrow our house.

Posted by: SciFi Dad at June 14, 2007 8:07 AM

wow, I felt the exact same way when we were leaving our first house in NJ last year, it was our first house, brought our son home there, etc. All the firsts..but you are right, home is where your family is, and even though I am in another state alltogether, I was able to make this new house my home, and this is where our 2nd son will have his "firsts" Kinda cool I guess!

Posted by: Danielle at June 14, 2007 8:11 AM

This is my third house and I can't wait to leave it. Our first house was memorable only because of that. But our second house was our dream home. I can't even look at pictures of it because I wish we still lived there. Things change and we have to change with it.

One thing you might do is write (as in on paper) a small blurb about the house, just like you did in this post, and hide it somewhere within the house. Someplace safe, but well hidden. For someone far in the future to find.

The previous owner did this in our first house, and I only found it when I was cleaning out the day we moved out of it, six years later. It was hidden away behind some support framing in a closet. It was neat to read about it. I put it back and left it for someone else to find.

Posted by: Jon (was) in Michigan at June 14, 2007 8:12 AM

I'm all choked up. The very reasons I've lived in the same home for 13 years. That and the buyers market in AZ sucks. $200,000.00 will get you a 1,300 sq ft shack.

This was a great post.

Posted by: nila at June 14, 2007 8:21 AM

"...home will always be wherever my girls and I are.

See, that's what I like about you. You got your sh*t together real good.

Posted by: Amber at June 14, 2007 8:26 AM

Are you staying in the area?

When we moved I discovered after, much prying, that my son was afraid that we were going to leave all of our belongings in the old house. He was VERY relieved to find out we were able to take our things with us.

Posted by: MammaLoves at June 14, 2007 8:33 AM

Very sweet. I hope you and the girls sell it quickly and close on a new house of your dreams just as fast.

Posted by: Maria at June 14, 2007 8:36 AM

We outgrew our first home eight and half years after buying it. We moved into it the day after we got married. We got pregnant will all of our kids there and brought each of them home from the hospital to that house. But we needed space and the neighborhood was...um...declining. We wanted/needed that house to sell and when it did we were ecstatic. But the night we drove away from it, I wrote something on the wall of the garage about the place having been the "first home" of our children and I cried like a big baby when we left. I filmed the entire house...every room so that our kids would remember it later on. I love the house we're in now, but I have the sweetest memories of the first one. I understand what you're going through perfectly. It's very bittersweet.

Posted by: wordgirl at June 14, 2007 8:42 AM

So sweet...until the end. Yet all so true.

Posted by: Jessie at June 14, 2007 8:45 AM

I still fondly recall the house where my children was born. We moved for the same reason you are; we needed more room. The house we have now is servicable, and it's ours, but that first house? God it was charming. I could have lived there forever. And I still drive by it occasionally, remembering the day my husband and I got married in its living room, and the tree in the front yard where we took pictures.

Posted by: Candy at June 14, 2007 9:14 AM

As someone who gets emotionally attached to everything, I can relate to what you're feeling. You've got a lot of milestones in your house.

But I also understand the urge to move, and I hope your place sells speedily.

Posted by: bad penguin at June 14, 2007 9:19 AM

I wish walls could just be walls.

I despise this apartment with every fiber of my being, but I will miss it terribly. I will miss the memories made here. I will miss that Taylor and I have spent every single day together here. Jacob and I went through a very very rough time in our relationship and we worked it out. Here. We made up here. We had Taylor's first birthday party here. Ugh. I'm tearing up just writing this. In about 5 months I'll be writing an entry like this and I'm sure it will be very emotional.

Hopefully this will be an easy process. I know the buying part is a whole awful ordeal. I don't even want to imagine what the selling part is like.

Posted by: Stephanie at June 14, 2007 9:19 AM

Oh, I know Chris. We're getting ready to sell our house too, probably not till this fall, though. We moved in 9 years ago and had three kids here! I will be so so sad when we leave.

Hope it sells fast and above listing!

Posted by: Kris at June 14, 2007 9:31 AM

You can't go wrong by ending a slightly sappy post with a reference to the sweet delicious cocaine. Works. Every. Time.

Posted by: You can call me, 'Sir' at June 14, 2007 9:45 AM

We still miss our old house. Z still talks about it from time to time. There are a LOT of great memories wrapped up in that place. And still, we love our new house 10 times more. This is home now and when we've been here as many years as we were at the old house, this place will carry the bulk of our kid's memories.

Posted by: Brad at June 14, 2007 9:50 AM

I feel your pain, we sold our old place last December. Best of luck to y'all, hope it sells quick!

Posted by: Holmes at June 14, 2007 9:52 AM

nila is so cute! she thinks $200,000 is a lot for a 1,300 sq. ft shack! around here a 1,300 sq. ft shack is worth about 3 times that amount.

Posted by: jen at June 14, 2007 10:08 AM

My family moved around a lot when I was growing up. It was always hard to leave the houses we loved, but it's exciting to create new memories behind new walls too...

Posted by: suze at June 14, 2007 10:16 AM

Just such a lovely post.

I imagine that's similar to how my parents felt about moving this month. They lived in the same house for over 33 years. It's the house where their whole lives (and most of mine) happened.

And now... I'm crying. Thanks. sniffle sniffle.

Posted by: Colleen at June 14, 2007 10:22 AM

Just such a lovely post.

I imagine that's similar to how my parents felt about moving this month. They lived in the same house for over 33 years. It's the house where their entire life together (and most of mine) happened.

And now... I'm crying. Thanks. sniffle sniffle.

Posted by: Colleen at June 14, 2007 10:24 AM

think of all the new memories you'll make in your new house. you have to look at it that way, or else it'll depress you!

Posted by: ali at June 14, 2007 10:44 AM

awww...that was sweet.... My husband and I are having issues about our townhouse... He thinks we will be there 10 yrs... while I like it - it's just not my idea of where I want to spend more than 5 or 6 years...

Posted by: Sue R at June 14, 2007 10:50 AM

That was beautiful :-) Especially "Mommy and daddy and Mia always make home." Just...aww! Good luck (I already wished Beth over at her "work blog" all of the very best and highest offers, but hey, a little more wishes can't hurt!)

Posted by: Heather at June 14, 2007 11:23 AM

I am sure that you have done this... but take lots of pictures of every room! I wish I had better pictures of my first house. I missed it when I moved, it was perfect for my family at that time but was sadly too small for what we were to become. You will miss it, but you will have other walls, doors and floors to hold your memories soon. I am sure it will be great!

Posted by: Tara at June 14, 2007 11:23 AM

How exciting, putting your house up for sale! I'm sure you'll be sad to see the old one go, but it's also fun to have something new and different. :)

Posted by: Zandria at June 14, 2007 11:30 AM

The true walls where those memories live are within your heart and mind and soul. We've moved our boys so many times, but I will never forget the day they came home from the hospital or taking their first steps (amazingly both in the same house as we did manage to live in one place for nearly 3 years in the last 7). Yet, I still feel like all the other places we've lived previously are still my home. That's a hard feeling to shake. I still feel that was about my childhood home and my mom hasn't even lived there for nearly 20 years.

Posted by: Amy at June 14, 2007 11:32 AM

We moved from our first home when Lily was about 8mo and I had all the same feelings. Now I worry how I'll feel if we ever leave this home since Anya was actually born in our bedroom. But you build new memories and love in another home. And you make it your own.

But then, you already knew that.

Posted by: Elaine at June 14, 2007 12:49 PM

Me: And Mia. Mommy and daddy and Mia always make home.

That made me tear up. It's such an important concept to drive home, I think.

Posted by: Sparkle Pants at June 14, 2007 12:59 PM

My niece asked, before my brother and his family moved from Michigan to New Mexico, "do I get to come too?" It's funny, the things they need to hear.

Posted by: sandra at June 14, 2007 1:21 PM

Our house has been on the market for almost a year. looks ike tomorrow we are going to get our first bid on the house. If it is close to our asking price its a go and we will sell our house. We hate where we live and want to live closer to our family, but as this gets closer and more real I am getting nervous and sad and feeling the same things you are. This is was our first home together and the only one that our daughter has known. I know that this change is good, but still a little sad.

Posted by: Punk Rock Mom at June 14, 2007 2:13 PM

I had sellers remorse, house hunting remorse, buying remorse, remodeling remorse... But I'm OK now. You'll be OK too. ;)

Posted by: Tink at June 14, 2007 2:58 PM

Good Luck moving all those books and CD's. ;-)

Posted by: Kristy at June 14, 2007 3:34 PM

sniff sniff...awwwww...how sweet!!! It made me think ahead a couple years to when we outgrow our house and have to move. Li'l Foot will have taken her first steps and all in this house. We don't have a magnolia tree outside but we did plant a Japanese Maple in our front yard last year when we found out I was pregnant so that'll have to be uprooted and not be part of the deal on the house when we do sell!!!! Good luck, I hope everything moves quickly for you.

Posted by: Li'l Foot's Mommy at June 14, 2007 5:00 PM

sniff sniff...awwwww...how sweet!!! It made me think ahead a couple years to when we outgrow our house and have to move. Li'l Foot will have taken her first steps and all in this house. We don't have a magnolia tree outside but we did plant a Japanese Maple in our front yard last year when we found out I was pregnant so that'll have to be uprooted and not be part of the deal on the house when we do sell!!!! Good luck, I hope everything moves quickly for you.

Posted by: Li'l Foot's Mommy at June 14, 2007 5:01 PM

You're right...home is where your family is. It always will be.

Here's to the house selling fast.

Posted by: Isabel at June 14, 2007 6:50 PM

Just be prepared when it sells in less than a week! No one's ever prepared for that.

Here's hoping you make a fortune too!

Posted by: coolchick at June 14, 2007 8:47 PM

A bit teary here, sitting at my desk when my day should already be over. It was what you said to Mia that did it. Reading the comments of people who've been through the same thing, seeing how bittersweet such transitions seem to be, I can only hope that such an experience is ahead of me in my "someday..."

Posted by: Judy at June 14, 2007 9:18 PM

We are hoping to put our house up next spring and as excited as I am about a new, bigger place....I'm sad because this was our 1st house, our child has grown up here, etc....

But a dishwasher will take my blues away!

Posted by: FENICLE at June 14, 2007 10:40 PM

If it helps any, I cried as I was packing up my condo before the wedding. Moving to his house made much more sense, but I had so many memories, both good and bad, in my condo that I hated to leave. There was no first steps or anything as wonderful as that, but it was the only place I'd ever owned by myself and I felt like I "grew up" there, even though I was 30 when I bought it. D thought I was silly when I cried about moving, but I think he understands now.

The fact that you know that home is where your family is makes us all love you more. It's also what will get you through the whole house selling process, it's what got me through it, knowing I was moving in with my best friend and (soon to be) husband.

Good luck!

Posted by: Krush at June 14, 2007 11:20 PM

I can relate. This is only our second home that we've owned. Lynn and I have lived in six homes. Our son only has memories of the home that we live in now.

The fact that Mia is so eager to move is a good thing. Sending good vibes that all goes smoothly and quickly in selling.

Posted by: Diane at June 14, 2007 11:54 PM

this post made me sad and happy. :)

with my mom gone, our house is too big for us. my dad's also getting tired of maintaining the house (he's currently at war with a groundhog living underneath our tool shed). he wants to sell it and i don't know what i want to do. we've been living in this house for 20 years and it's hard to let go of it.

Posted by: Denise at June 15, 2007 1:19 AM

You always manage to bring tears to my eyes! Beautiful post.

And: "someplace we can continue to grow"! Haha!! Do you need to share something with us?

Posted by: Nadine at June 15, 2007 6:01 AM

Awww, I am all sniffly. And I know exactly where you are coming from. We felt that way when we left our apartment, when we left our first house... so I can't imagine what it's like leaving the house where the baby came from.

Posted by: aimee/greeblemonkey at June 15, 2007 9:05 AM

when we moved into our first house i declared (and firmly believed) that they would drag my cold rotting corpse out of it. i adored that house, it was warm, cozy, the place my memories were, kitties, doggies, parties, my son... blah blah blah. but as your title states... walls, it's just walls.

now we're in our 2nd house (coming up on two years) and we love it, i can't imagine doing what we do anywhere else. we've made new memories... we've made it a home. it's true... home is where the heart is. home is where your loved ones are. and memories, well they are just that, memories - they're the same if you have them where they occurred or someplace new.

Posted by: monique at June 15, 2007 10:58 AM

hehe, the last line has me cracking up.

Posted by: Jenn at June 16, 2007 10:53 AM

Our old house didn't rule anywhere near as much as yours does. In fact, it sucked hardcore. I hated it so much. Still, when we moved, I was pretty sad to let it go. It's where we started our lives, had our first kid... It's where I burnt the kitchen down. A lot of good memories. It's a big change, but totally worth it. Good luck with it because it's also stressful as all hell until all is said and done.

Posted by: rsm at June 21, 2007 11:32 PM


DEC08_RECENT.jpg


DEC08_ARCHIVE.jpg