Saturday, May 15, 2010

Two Weeks Lost

In my last post, I stated how disappointed I was in myself for not writing for so long.  I hadn't written anything, even on paper, for about a month or more.  Since that post, I haven't written in two or three weeks.  I have written journal entries once or twice, not much. 

Last night, I told my daughter that I wanted to start writing again.  Her reply, "You always say that."  Ouch.  True, but painful.  So today I will write.  Tomorrow I will write.  And on and on.  If I dedicate myself to do it every morning, no matter how uninspired I may be (I am completely uninspired today, by the way) I will feel like a productive writer.  I will have something that's mine, something to show for the time I have taken off of work besides a solid knowledge of .Net and a baby who can say funny words I try to get him to say while we are home alone in the morning. 

We have been planning on buying another house, but the sale fell through due to lack of business quality internet service just 5 minutes from a large university in rural Ohio.  My husband does IT work in Africa, where businesses can connect with static IP addresses in the desert. 

Since we lost that house, I have been consumed with looking for another and with fixing up our house.  I have painted, caulked, polished, cleaned, and managed a handful of contractors. 

Just two days ago, we decided to just stay here, to stay on hold, and let the realtor look for us, to save the money that we would have put into the house for the future and to use to have fun with our family. When I did the calculations of the amount we would pay on this house for 13 more years to pay it off versus 30 years for a very nice and somewhat pricier house in the price range we were planning to buy, the difference was a shocking $440,000.  That's 44 amazing vacations for the family, 10 very nice new cars, and college for all the kids.  That amount combined with what we are able to invest while living in our moderately priced house is astounding.  We could be completely debt free and own our home outright before I'm 50, before my husband is 40, which is really something to work toward.  I would way rather pay for private school if need be than that much money, just for an extra bedroom and a larger yard, from now until I'm 72 years old. 

My kids were very disappointed to find out we were not going to make an offer on a fantastic custom home we had looked at the week prior.  We stood to be able to get a 25% discount on the very fancy home that had all the things we needed plus the wow factor that we thought would make us happy forever.  Two of the kid's rooms had ladders to go up to a bonus room overhead that joined in the middle in a room my teenager imagined to be a gaming room and my 3rd grader decided would make the perfect place to pretend to be spies.  The fact is that I would never see them or my husband again.  He would be in the secret cave in the basement fiddling around.  I would be cleaning a monster of a house, same as here, feeling more alone than I would ever feel here. 

When I put the amount we would save into terms my daughter could understand:  10 Mustang GT's, she got it and asked if we would buy her one when she's in college.  A solid, "I can't promise anything, but it's possible," was my honest, but non-committal reply.  It is possible.  It wouldn't be possible for us to help her with any car if we take the plunge with a 30 year mortgage in an area where tax rates seem to be out of check.

You would think the decision to stay put while keeping our eye on a more affordable good deal would make me feel relieved and happy.  But I feel let down, the feeling you have when you graduate from college with no job in site, finishing a huge project at work wondering if now you will be laid off, finishing a story with only a blank notebook in front of you:  that all the time you invested in something is done, you feel proud, relieved it's done, but now what?  It makes me want to lay in bed in pajamas and watch marathons of "Say Yes to the Dress" or "Little Miss Perfect" to make me feel better. 

Today, I need to redirect the energy I have been putting into moving.  I can't believe how depressed I felt yesterday when we told the realtor to put things on hold.  It's great to have our house fixed up, but now I'm worried my family will not be careful about keeping it clean since it won't be as important to them, leaving me in perpetual housekeeper mode. I definitely have some small fix up projects to do, but it's time to write and read to prepare myself for graduate school.  It's time to make time to have fun with my kids, to make myself relax and enjoy life everyday, which for me includes writing a stupid poem every day or reading some Jane Austen.

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