July 8, 2009

Moving

Last weekend, flying back to Austin from Las Vegas, and knowing we would be closing on our house a few days later, I wrote this, planning to post it yesterday:

Today we sold our house. Our darling brick house. The house that we bought one day before my 21st birthday. The house we imagined we might bring our first child home to (clearly that did not happen). The house we stayed up late painting in the first year we lived there. The house I opened my acceptance letter to UT in. It breaks my heart to say goodbye to this house.

Over the weekend, we’ve finished packing up the house, watching it slowly become more like the bare house we first saw three years ago. The bookshelves emptied out, and then the pictures came off the wall, and then room by room, there was nothing left by walls and wood floors.

We’ve been lucky. I know that. In this terrible market, our house only sat on the market for four days. For the most part, the last four and a half weeks have been pretty smooth to get ready for closing. I had no desire to hang on to the house, to deal with renters, or sudden repairs. The woman who bought it has family in the area, and it makes me happy to know her grandchildren will come to the house and play in the yard or the finished garage. She didn’t make us repaint the dark brown/purple bedroom we’ve loved so much. I’m grateful the house issue, which I’ve worried about for nearly a year, is taken care of and no longer a worry.

But, oh, I want to weep when I think about walking out of that house for the last time. I’ve been so very happy in our house. And now it’s not ours anymore.

It’s all very melodramatic and obviously written by someone who had not yet packed up a three bedroom house into a moving truck and then into a storage unit. It definitely wasn’t written by someone who, at 10:30 p.m. on a weeknight, was scrubbing out the fridge or retouching the paint in the living room or cleaning out the toilet.

Moving has a way of helping you forget how much you loved a place – after all the boxing and sorting and labeling and hauling and cleaning, I was more than ready to walk out and not have to worry about it anymore. Lock that door up for the last time and let’s drive away.

As we walked out of the title company office after closing yesterday, (small) check in hand, Bart said to me, with a huge grin, “We’re no longer home owners!” and I laughed right back. We high-fived in the hallway.

Goodbye, darling brick house. Have a nice life.

27 comments:

  1. Good luck with "Bart & Janssen Phase 2" !

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  2. Ahh, moving is always such a bittersweet experience! I can't wait to hear about your upcoming adventures!

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  3. Boston isn't going to know what hit them! So, the real question remains: are you currently homeless?

    xox

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  4. So where are you living now? Out of your storage unit?

    I was not sad to leave our apartment (not ours, rented) behind but MAN did I hate the cleaning! After 5 years in our house it could really use a little touch up painting as well, but with little kids I'm not planning to do it any time soon.

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  5. I better see you again before you move! Between you and Kristi, I'm wishing I was ready for a little more helping out my friends and adventuring around town. This whole recovering from childbirth thing is kinda a drag!

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  6. Boston is OLD.
    (and expensive)
    Just remember that when you start house hunting here...
    So much charm!
    :)
    Can't wait to hear.

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  7. What? No photo of the darling brick house? Life goes on and it's so exciting!

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  8. This is probably my favorite post that you've ever written. It was awesome.

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  9. Oh my. I hear you. Having just moved for the umpteenth time (I can't believe I just used my mother's expression) since we married, I completely understand the sentimentality...and then the relief for the moving and cleaning to be over. Oh, the moving and cleaning!

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  10. Love it! You captured the split personality in me.

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  11. sooooo true! we JUST got an offer on our town house after two weeks (we feel blessed in nevada having multiple offers in such a short time- it's bad here) and yea- a small check is better than 'no check' and while you reminisce about the house (ours I graduated college, brought our baby home ect, put wood floors in) you forget all that while packing and moving crap all day- homeownsership is overrated sometimes- congrats on selling your house and having it 'done' and woohoo on the next chapter in your lives! yea! (PS your house DID sound very charming:)

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  12. Being just on the other side of where you are (just moved in to our first home) I can only dream of the good things that will happen while we are here. And then I hope, when we move, that our home sells as fast as yours. I'm already not looking forward to the packing and the cleaning.

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  13. You about had me in tears. Then you hit us with the reminder of reality of moving...

    I really can't believe you sold your house that quickly. May you find an equally nice house to move into.

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  14. oh happy house! the next one will have even more memories!

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  15. Best wishes. It's scary but exciting, right? :)

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  16. Jannsen!
    I'm so happy for you to sell--I know the huge relief, but I also feel your sadness to leave! What a crazy coincidence that we both wrote something so similar today. We are meant to be friends!

    Oh, and even though we love you as "Christmas and New Year's" neighbors, we'd adore you as permanent ones!

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  17. Whoops, I doubled the wrong letter in your name. Please forgive me.

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  18. This is so bittersweet. Moving is always like that. You're sad and nostalgic and then you're tired and grubby and barely care anymore.

    Congrats on selling your house! I'm so excited for you guys and your move.

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  19. Loved the last sentence. I feel the same way about our first house: we brought our first babies home to it and transformed the yard into something really beautiful. I sometimes would love to see it again (it is also in Texas), but I'm afraid of seeing it looking shabby or unloved. It might just be a house, but for a time it was HOME.

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  20. Oh my goodness, I totally understand that feeling. Congrats and best wishes on your new beginnings!

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  21. Yeah I know what you mean! I've been sad every time I've moved in the last few years, but the sentimental feelings were always gone by the time everything was all packed and cleaned, and replaced with a desire to never see the place again. :)

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  22. We have done our fair share of moving and all I can say is - It just gets worse. You look around and think, we don't have that much stuff, how bad can it be?? You've had your first taste and lived through it - congrats. :)

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  23. Love this one. Good luck homeshopping in Boston!

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  24. Wow, that made me so sad.....and I never got to see the brick house!

    It seems weird to think you are moving....but then again I think-since we don't see you all anymore...it will still kinda be the same!

    I'm happy for both of you....Boston is beautiful-I could see you two loving it!

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  25. We move a lot, so I've come to think of it as spring cleaning and a stroll down memory lane. It's probably the only time I get to look through some of my old childhood boxes and see the items I have stored in the back of the closet.

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  26. I'm so glad you had a happy house selling experience -- it gives me hope! (not yet, but maybe next year.) Just one of the many milestones for your little family :)

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