The boxes have been packed and dropped off at the new house. The furnishings remain and will be taken today. By the end of this day, our shack will be empty, just like the day we arrived 15 months ago.
There were many, many moments while moving into the shack that I questioned our sanity. Nothing could fit anywhere. There was no space for anything.
And yet, there is a part of me that looks at this place fondly–that can turn to these walls closing in on us, and say “We did it.”
I hear the stories our parents tell of their newlywed days, of renting a room and sharing a twin bed. Of carpooling with friends because they didn’t have enough money for gas.
And both our parents now have homes filled with furnishings not bought off Craigslist.
Will I tell our children our stories? Of how their mother used to do mystery shops for $10 a pop to save up for a honeymoon two years after we got married? Of how we limited ourselves to $20 a week for frivolous expenses? On how we lived in a shack to save money and put their father through school so he could become a firefighter?
Will these be the stories we tell?
Twenty years from now, will we drive by and point to the guesthouse in the backyard and say “We lived there…” and will they ask, “You lived there?”
They will see the dilapidated stairs, the paint chipping on the walls, the 70’s style formica, and the old gray needed-to-be-replaced-ten-years-ago carpet and they will question our sanity.
But we did it. We were broke newlyweds and these were the sacrifices we made to pay off debt and save for a better future.
This is our journey.
And that is what I will tell our children.
Image found here