I feel like I live in a box. A very plain Jane box. Rooms with walls but no life. Blah-ville to the umpteenth degree. Let me explain...
We have occupied this house for seven years this upcoming August. I chose the word, "occupy" carefully because quite frankly, that's how I feel. Have almost always felt...
We built this house to be able to look after my aging in-laws. They moved in to their main-floor space on August 19, 2005 and we moved into where ever we could fit two weeks later. The flooring, trim and painting was incomplete, we took the builders credit and said we'd do it ourselves. (I had particle board as flooring in our bedroom until 2.5 yrs ago. It took almost 3 years after moving in to get carpet in the kids bedrooms...)
A couple days after moving in, we headed out west for a month-long vacation. Dave managed to pick up Walking Pneumonia trying to get our new house built & all of us (including his parents) moved in, baby #4 arrived and our church was in the midst of the toughest construction part of renovations. Yes, my Pastor hubby isn't just another pretty face! Needless to say, actually finishing our house before moving in wasn't to be.
My mother-in-law succumbed to congestive heart failure early in the morning on October 7, 2005. She died in our home, in my husband's arms. Life stood still for a while.
Slowly over the years in between then and now, we put most of the flooring down, some of the trim and most of the rooms were painted. We put (several) tens of thousands of dollars into making the basement our living space, getting it about 80% finished and to the way I wanted it. Shag carpet in the living room, cork flooring in the kitchen, and slate in the bathroom. I liked it down there. A lot.
Life stood still once again on August 17, 2011. My father-in-law passed away in our home, another parent to die in Dave's arms.
Due to some crazy that took place with Dad's second wife, extended family and his estate even before he passed - I feel like we've been zombies. In a catatonic state, just barely getting by. (Adding to the stress is the fact that our church sold it's 1st building and bought a new one, we moved into it March 2011 and are again... renovating!)
In the middle of November, my sister-in-law and her husband moved into our living space in the basement and we moved up into what was once upon a time my in-law's space. We made their old bedroom our media room and their old living room is now the kids gaming space with a Hodge-podge of furniture. I think the term is "Eclectic!"
His kitchen is smaller than mine that I had custom built in the basement for us, it's been tricky to find room for everything. My pictures hang where Dad already had nails (or in his case, massive giant screws with anchors). The space is still unpainted and missing trim and not to mention... he never did get around to putting up the back deck. All things we will now have to do.
|trying to find a place for everything...|
|This was Dad's old bedroom / now our media room|
|it's hard to keep clean when it doesn't feel like mine|
I'm surrounded by the feeling like this is not my home. I feel like I'm intruding. It's all a bit overwhelming when you look at all that needs to be done. The "to-do" list seems endless.
This past weekend, Dave and I sat down and he learned real quick the urgency that this mother of four needs to have a place she can feel at home, a place she can be proud of and not embarrassed to invite friends over to...
The first space we're going to tackle is... the kitchen / dining room & bathroom. Today I'm off to pick the paint colours and find a neutral back splash. We can't afford to renovate the entire kitchen at this point, Dad's choice in cupboards and counter tops will have to do. Those are easy enough tasks right? Then why do my feet feel like they're encased in cement.... **Update: I feel like I'm afraid I'll offend family if I remove "mom and dad" and make this my home.
This house has taken it's toll on me. Life while being in this house even more so. I'm not ungrateful for all I have, I just want to stop living in limbo and feel like I'm home. Is that too much to ask?!