Isn’t it ironic that after not crafting a blog post for nearly 45 days, that a new post should appear on national All Fools Day?
I thought so, too.
Where have I been hiding for the past few months, you wonder? (Or not!) Not anywhere ultra-fantastic (although I did take respite in the desert sun for a few days, while tagging along with a Sexy Hubby work trip.)
The bigger question is what have I discovered in the past weeks?
It’s a good one. And one that I love. It was an epiphany of sorts, and I hope that by sharing this personal nugget, it will enable you to look deep within yourself to discover hidden treasures, and moments of immense clarity.
The beginning of March 2013 marked three years since our very painful and very public embarrassment.
A loss of colossal proportions.
It was the moment our mountain log cabin delved into the abyss of foreclosure, taking with it every equity penny we had earned, all savings and retirement funds, and nearly every bit of our self-worth.
Of course, I always try to find “a reason” why something happened.
What was this suppose to teach us? How were we to do better after this? What was the greater lesson hidden in the jolting loss?
Oh, did I grapple. And I ignored reason. And I defied logic.
In a word, I think I just buried my head in the sand, hoping to wake up and find it was all a crazy April Fools joke. Only no one was joking. Or laughing. And I dared not to cry for fear I’d never stop.
Fast forward to today. Three years later. And only recently did the epiphany arise from the mire. And it’s a good one. And one that I feel compelled to share, as perhaps someone who reads this (either of my two followers) will gain insight.
In a nutshell, the events from New Year’s Day to April Fools Day are as follows:
Our current rental home recently was placed for sale. We thought, what the heck, we should try and buy it, realizing of course, no bank this side of normal would consider us a worthy credit risk, but we decided to roll the dice…
And we hit Lucky 7.
Then, all of the sudden, I really decided to double-down. If the bank was willing to sell us THIS place, would they sell us something we really wanted?
Turns out they did.
Also during this time, I reconnected with our friend/realtor who began sending me daily email listings on houses within our desired price range. Something popped up that looked interesting, and on a whim, I made an appointment to see the house. But, on the drive over to this house, I thought, “What the heck am I doing? Why are trying to buy another house? This is crazy.” Good thing I didn’t listen to myself.
I viewed the house. A bungalow on a quaint street, with a park. I walked in, and after a very brief tour, I knew it was perfect for us. Small house, small yard = completely manageable.
With the bank’s blessing, we placed an offer, got approved, and in approximately 2 weeks, we will move into our new home.
It’s akin to winning the lottery for us.
But the real epiphany is this – the bank qualified us for a much larger amount of money, yet we chose to purchase something less. Considerably less – in other words, for the first time in our adult lives, we are choosing to live BELOW our means.
And it is the best feeling of comfort I’ve ever known.
Living below our means.
Words to live by.
And a lesson that was three years (or a lifetime?) in the making.
Thank goodness the lesson finally bubbled to the surface. Not only does it allow sleep to swirl around me peacefully, rather than fitfully, but it offers great information and explanation to the aforementioned foreclosure and how we missed the warning flags as we zoomed past reason and straight into the financial danger zone – a place where I never, ever care to make a return visit.
What lessons have you learned? Do you dare to share?
(And be ready for the blogs to follow sharing the before | after shots of the new house! Oh, and we’ve got tons of DIY projects up our sleeves!!)