Last year was so stressful, emotional and exhausting that just writing about it in small pieces causes me serious anxiety and emotional distress. If I thought losing my father and taking care of my mother and sister were difficult, these three weeks were worse.
Time To Sell
The decision was made in July to sell our home. My parents had lived there for 25 years and I had been there for 14. It was a hard decision and came with sadness, second guessing and tears. Most of the grandchildren had never known Grandma to live anywhere else. My children took it hard since that house had been their safe haven for so many years.
Our realtor lived behind us. Why? Because he had a vested interest in who bought our house. There was a gate between our backyards that our daughters had played through for over a decade.
Due to our financial circumstances we decided to go short sale. We were behind in our payments and could not make them any more. That would give us 4-6 months to get organized, pack, find a place to live and move. That is not what happened.
Within two days of putting the house on the market we had four showings and two offers. One family was willing to pay full asking price and all back payments. They said that it felt like home as soon as they walked in the door and that is where they wanted to be. We accepted the asking price offer. In hind sight – we should have asked for a little more.
Where To Go
Here is where things got a little sticky. The new family needed to move in as soon as possible. Could we be out in three weeks? We would do our best but we could not guarantee it. Logistics:
- Find a place to live – downsizing
- 7,000 square feel of house to move
- 25 years of my parents lives to sort, organize, pack and move
- 2 generations of family history and heirlooms
- Splitting up our little 3 generation family
Daughter and I couldn’t find a place. I’m totally stressed out. My oldest daughter said that we could stay with them until we found a place. Jokingly my son-in-law said that we could put up a tent in his backyard. My daughter rolled her eyes. We all laughed.
Because of all the drastic changes in the last six months I felt very strongly that we needed to stay in our neighborhood. That way Daughter would have her friends and youth leaders to give her the support she needs and she would not have to change schools. Whatever stability I could provide her was my first consideration. We had friends looking around the neighborhood. Two days before we had to be out of the house I got a call from a friend. The for rent sign had just gone up that morning. I drove over to get the phone number and called. I looked at it that afternoon. It was a 900 square foot apartment just a couple of blocks north of our house that met the required qualifications. It is small, older, somewhat run down and $150 less than my budgeted price. I took it.
Time to call in the cavalry. All my local siblings, the grandchildren, neighbors and friends came to help us move. The task was daunting and there was more to do than time to do it in. Daughters young women’s group came and packed up her room. Friends helped me pack up my room. Heirlooms were divided between my mother’s children. My father’s tools were off-limits. My mother was not willing to give up the woodworking shop.
My mother rented one of those storage containers that the bring to your house. Now she could divide her possessions between the storage container and her new apartment. We also got one of those huge trash bins.
We could have very nicely furnished four apartments with what we had in the house. Some serious downsizing was required. We went through the house and marked everything that could be sold. My sister and her friends organized two yard sales that included online pictures and advertising. Couches, chairs, beds, shelves, a formal dining room set, electronics, books, kitchen items, clothing and nick knacks went. What ever was left was divided among family and friends. What they did not take was donated to our local Deseret Industries (Good Will).
My son-in-law was there 14 hours a day for two weeks helping us. My cousin came in, got us organized and packed up all our china, crystal, glass wares and other diner party items. Neighbors and friends brought in meals and helped move the heavier items. Even the young men in our neighborhood came and helped clean out our garage. We worked early mornings to late at night.
We requested an extra week to move but the new buyers asked us if we could be out five days sooner. They were renting the home they had just sold and the new owners wanted to move in. We worked harder. On the last day we were still moving out, the cleaners were going room to room behind us, the new owners were moving in.
Miracles Do Happen
We did it. We moved out of that huge house and downsized to two small apartments in just over two weeks. I had blisters on my feet, bleeding splits on my toes, sore muscles, was physically ill and exhausted. I had lived on Ignite (body efficiency), Limitless (energy) and Reload (restorative). I had lost 10 pounds and could barely move.