Two of the most frightening words I’ve ever heard. Besides “you’re pregnant”.
You may have heard me complain a time or two about my current living conditions. Apparently I have been subjecting you to this discussion for more than three years now. I can’t believe people still read when all I seem to do is complain about my house or work or both. Bless you. THREE YEARS of posts about how I was planning to move. Only to not move.
We started talking in earnest earlier this year. After the first shock of impending parenthood wore off, we were slapped in the face with reality of prepping for baby. Cribs, strollers, clothes, diapers, diaper disposal, changing station, bottles, baths, swings, and the list goes on for a frighteningly long time. She may be tiny (fingers crossed) when she arrives, but the entourage that arrives with her will fill every last inch of space we’ve carved out of our 1,000 sq ft townhouse.
We got encouragement from parents, elbow nudges from siblings, hand claps from friends, but it all still seemed fake. I mean, we’ve been talking about this for three years. What’s different?
And then I got pre-qualified by a lender. But then we went on vacation and didn’t do anything about that. And then we got asked and poked and prodded by our parents some more. In order to have answers for them, our procrastinating behinds booked a meeting with a realtor. And then he set us up on a distribution for daily housing updates for houses that matched our search criteria. And then we didn’t like the houses. Or the houses we liked went off market almost as soon as they went on the market. And a few more weeks went by. And then we actually broke down and went to look at 3 houses. And then 2 more. And then Bella got sick. And then Bella died. And then we had company for a baby shower (that I still have to write about). And this house the we blindly marked as possible when we were trying to distract ourselves from thinking about Bella sick in her kennel was still sitting in our possible category “on market”. So we booked our appointment. And fell in love.
2500 sq ft. Just over half acre lot. Grass and trees and a deck and a screened in porch and a (albeit in need of repair) fenced in backyard. Formal living room and dining room. Plus a den with fireplace that leads out to the screened in porch. Big kitchen with walk-in pantry and breakfast nook. Mud room with relatively new washer and dryer (convey) and tons of storage, also with access door to the screened in porch (did I mention screened in porch cuz LOVING IT). Guest bedroom and full bathroom on the first floor. 2 more bedrooms and a full bath upstairs IN ADDITION to the master bedroom and full bath.
There are things we want to change, cosmetic updates that we can address over time. The house currently has above ground power/phone/cable so we’d want to convert to underground. A quick phone call yesterday revealed that we may be able to do that free! The owners have dogs so some of the hardwoods are scratched, but they are those crappy check pattern hardwoods anyway so it gives us a good excuse to replace them. There is no garage, and the driveway drops off before reaching the house, so we want to extend the cement up to the side of the house and eventually put in a fancy carport. We’re likely looking at another bathroom remodel in a few years. A few trees we want to pull. The front walk could use some attention. Nothing major, just putting some braces on the crooked teeth.
So we made an offer, they countered, we countered back, and then we went under contract. Negotiated closing date of exactly one week before I’m due. HOLY CRAP. Suddenly all the things bombarded my minuscule pregnancy brain. What do we do with our townhouse? How are we ever gonna get people to live here? What if the baby comes early? All the things we still have to buy for the baby and the medical bills and all the things we still have to buy for the house(s). Loan approval? Appraisal shouldn’t be an issue, but the house was built in 1977 so I’m reeeeeeeeeeeally hoping nothing pops up on the inspection (scheduled for the 16th).
I’m usually pretty good at taking things a step at a time, handle this thing and then see what crops up. My life has been very much like a choose your own adventure book, impossible to read ahead. I’ve just picked an option, rode that wave for a while until some more options presented themselves and repeat. But this time, I feel an overwhelming need to have all the answers, and all the bases covered, and all the contingencies in place, and it is impossible. Is this my nesting? I haven’t had the urge to paint or straighten or arrange and rearrange furniture or purge belongings that clutter (all of which would be really helpful right about now). So maybe I am nesting information. Give me all the scenarios so I can freak out about those now and make sure that I’m not about to give birth in a car under a bridge somewhere because of no money and no house(s). Sometimes ignorance really is bliss. It’s good to be prepared for the things you can control, like making sure to pack underwear in your carry-on in case the plane loses your luggage. But some things you have to take as they come. I cannot predict if my loan will be approved, I can only provide the paperwork they ask of me as expediently as possible. And I have to press forward as if it will be approved, because what else can you do?
And if the worst of all possible scenarios does strike us, we will not be alone. Those same parents and siblings and friends are there to make sure we won’t give birth under a bridge, and we will eat, and we will find a way to pick ourselves back up because that’s what people do. That’s what families do. And we are extremely lucky to have a large and far reaching network of loved ones.