Here I am, two weeks before our move. My mind is busy with getting ready to go from 1400 square feet to 400 square feet. We’ve filled countless large blue bins with heaps of things we feel we are not ready to let go of. But, we have hauled away truckloads to the dump, and to local thrift stores. We’ve given away piles of things we once thought we couldn’t live without. It was not until we began this journey that we realized how much of our stuff just sat on shelves, aging and not being loved.
This is no easy road! We woke up one day last summer and said to each other that we wanted a different life. We wanted to feel like we could live and enjoy ourselves every day, and not get knots in our stomachs over the balance in our bank account and the lack of food in our fridge.
My husband is a great provider for our family. He works hard, and we always have what we need. But, we wanted to do more than just skate by. We wanted to do more than just pay rent and bills with our money. Life is for living now, because who knows about tomorrow. We could die tomorrow, but we are here today.
We wanted to make a change so we could live a better life both now and in the future. We talked about moving to a different state, where the housing may be cheaper. But that idea presented many of its own problems. We talked and prayed about going tiny with our living situation, and one day we found the perfect fifth wheel so we went for it.
So, here we are two weeks from making the big leap. We bought ourselves a 40 foot fifth wheel that we are preparing to live in, parked in a stationary spot. We got some new chairs to go with the dining room table and we bought a pretty rug for our living room. We bought nice new faucets for our sinks, and even splurged on a brand new bed for our room. We even got our little love seat that my grandparents gave us to fit in our bedroom. I found the perfect spaces and containers for keeping some toys in the living room for our children. I’ve spent time doing things like reorganizing our board games so they all fit just right in the tiny storage spaces. We’ve told ourselves we are ready and excited. We’ve told ourselves that we have everything we need.
So, yes, a large part of me is very excited. Excited for the change, and the lower level of stress in our lives. Excited for the potential of change in our family, our relationships, and better use of our time and resources. Excited to do something so different and daring, and all of that. But, then another part of me is nervous. Nervous because I’ve never done this before. Nervous because some people seem to look at us sideways when they find out what we are doing. So, then I find myself asking the questions- are we really doing the right thing? Will we regret this? Will we think we must have been crazy to make this choice? Who knows!?
You know before you have your first baby, how excited and nervous you are? You can read all the books. You can read a library full of books if you want, to try to prepare. You can talk to people who have already had babies. They will talk your ear off all day long with their ideas of what is best. There are a hundred different ideas. You can pick the ones that sound best to you and plan to do those things. You can even make a detailed plan about your child’s birth. You can plan out how you want it to go, hour by hour if you want.
But, when it comes down to it, no one really knows how your child’s birth will go. No one knows if after your baby is born he will have colic, and then all your plans for sleep will go out the window. No one really knows until the child is here. And it can be scary, and exciting, and unpredictable, and amazing all at the same time! And you cannot know what you need to do, or how to do it, to be a good parent to your particular baby until you do it. You may have read all the books. But, no one can really prepare you until you are holding your child. Then, you become a parent and you will know how to do well, from sheer love for your child!
So I’ll take this metaphor for our move. I’ve sought advice from those who have done it. Lots of advice! I’ve researched all the things that people have said are good for this lifestyle. We have even purchased some of those things. But, when it comes down to it, we really don’t know what it is that we are getting into. We won’t know what this life is like until we are in it. I’m ok with that because I know we prayed about this and we made an informed decision.
Our plan was to change our lives for the better, and I know we are on that track. For the first time in our lives together, we will own our house and be investing in it. And, absolutely- it is scary, and exciting, and unpredictable, and amazing all at the same time! When you step out for a huge life change, how can you expect anything less?
So, for now I’ll just keep packing and hauling away stuff. In two weeks our lives will be different. I don’t really know everything that is involved in this change, but we are here because we chose to be! It feels good to have more control over our lives even though I know we are not ultimately in control. I pray that God will guide us in all our decisions, and I’m praying this one is a good one. Only time will tell!