My entire adult life has seemingly been a long line of crisis' strung together. Granted, there have been some amazingly good times hung on that line as well, but I have not once had my shit together. I would like to know what that's like. I feel like we have a plan that is a long-term solution, not an 11th hour fix that might make things worse in the long run. We are not running from a problem, as we have tried and failed to do in the past. We are not hiding. We are actually on the upswing, not in the midst of a catastrophe right now. We could probably continue on as we are right now and be back on an even keel in the next 2 months...until the next issue throws us back into the tempest. Fuck that. For real, I can't do it anymore. The next blow might be the one I don't get up from. We have to find a better way. We have to make a deep change and really live it.
All our life together, we planned and the gods laughed. The Hubs and I had a series of loooong talks, followed by a long, serious, and highly emotional conversation with my parents over the weekend. We are going to start back at zero. We are going to carve down our lives to fit into what we can afford and manage, and we are going to keep it there.
What are our resources?
We have the Vardo. It needs some serious remodeling to be a permanent residence, like a working bathroom for instance, but it is all work that we have the tools and knowledge to do. Until then, it is structurally livable, as long as we have access to facilities.
We have a bunch of crap. I will be spending the next few weeks ruthlessly sorting our belongings into keep. pitch, sell. There are, really, very few belongings we have that we can't live without, especially when you factor in cost to store it and the odds of us living somewhere we can use large items like our furniture, in the next several years. Better to sell it and put the funds toward the Vardo. By the weekend I hope to have the 1st of several yard sales and have the bulk of our furniture on Craigslist.
We have a cheap place to park the Vardo. My parents have a 1 acre lot, and have graciously agreed to let us park the Vardo on it. We will have sewer hook-up, electrical hook-up, and much to our kids approval, cable. We will contribute to the utilities, and I will happily cook for the whole extended family. We will be close enough to their house to use their shower, (the Vardo toilet works, and the shower might work but it leaks and we are afraid to do more water damage) and their kitchen when I need an oven. The Hubs has a new job, and the 1st week that asked if he could transfer closer to where my parents live. Even if we move before he is transferred, the company will put him up in Safford during the week, they have several drivers who live in the Sierra Vista area, but stay in Safford during the week to work.
We have a fierce desire to abandon almost everything and build a better life from the ground up. The ultimate goal is to remodel the Vardo, and then build a Tiny House. Both of these projects will be done in small bites, as we can afford it. This is the 2nd part of living within our means. We don't want a mortgage for a house we hope we can still afford down the line. We want to build as we can afford it, and have no overhead once they are complete. Once these are done and fully livable, we will find a piece of land, buy it cash, and park our Tiny Houses on it. When we can afford it. Not when we think we have the budget on paper to afford the payment. That is where we fail, time and again. We now accept this limitation in ourselves and are acting accordingly.
On a more personal note, I seem to be in better mental health when I am in control of my living space. Even when we were squished in the Vardo, with my Dad ranting from his Alzheimer's and me having to care for him (he is fully incontinent, with a Foley Catheter and adult diapers...think of that in an RV) I was happier there. It was paid for. No one could ever evict us from the Vardo. It was mine to do with as I pleased. No matter what else was happening, that is an unbelievably comforting thought and I missed it the second we went back to renting.
I always wanted to remodel the Vardo, and that plan completely fell away when we moved. We moved into the rental house in all good faith that it would work, we would buy it down the line and make a home and a life here. We just got sucked up in plans, again. We see what could be in the future, and ignore what we should be doing today. Scaling down and making what we have work for us will let us focus on today. What can we do today, each day, to make our life better. We are committing to no longer live a someday life. Someday we will own this. Someday we will be able to to that. I am 38, someday will never come until I decide today is that someday.
Today is the day I will begin to sort out my life.
Today is the day I will do something to make the life I want happen.
Today I will plan, but I will also DO!
Today I will make my life better, and no longer wait for XYZ to make it better for me.