The house is off the market, at least for a while. Not a good time to be selling at this price range in Ketchikan, Alaska. So the listing will get a rest, at least till spring, and regroup begins.
I ask myself: if I can’t control the housing market, what do I control? What is my response?
I’ve taken inventory of commitments, obligations, opportunities. I’ve talked with managers at my office who can work with me through a transition.
This is my plan.
I’m moving to relief status with my administrative position for the medical group in January. I’m also enrolled as a substitute teacher for the local schools. I can’t continue to keep both feet in Ketchikan on a weekly basis and maintain a life with Rob. So I’m choosing. I’m choosing opportunity for the unknown over security, change instead of stability, serendipity over structure. I’m stepping off.
The house will still be a commitment, and one that I have to support. So I’ll do it, but in a way that doesn’t require a daily presence.
I’m reducing my income, streamlining my habits. If I’m working relief, and subbing in school when possible, that’s just a given. I can’t have it both ways.
And what do I get in exchange?
I get more time to be with my partner, the husband I chose long ago, and the relationship I’ve committed to. When he’s in the region to work, I’ll work, and when he’s off traveling, I’ll travel.
I get more opportunity to be with others who are important in my life.
I get potential for adventure.
I’ll have time to develop new interests and hone new skills.
I get…I don’t know…that’s part of the charm and the magic. I don’t know what I’ll get!
Planning for this means that thought, budgeting, organizing, daydreaming, anxiety, stress, hope, excitement, and joy are all part of the process. There are days I am excited and days I am nervous. I’ve left jobs and income before. I’ve moved. I’ve sold houses. But I’ve never left a job behind, kept the house, and planned to stay afloat on part-time work, not knowing what the future would hold.
It’s a brave new world, for me, anyway. I’m sure I can do it. I think it will be like the sky diving adventure in June. The first step was the hardest, and after that initial leap out the door, the rest was easy, including the perfect landing.
Granted, doing this is possible because I’m at a time in my life when kids are grown, there are more resources and flexibilities built in. But it isn’t easy, and it isn’t automatic. I suspect, as is the case for most things that promise great reward, it will take a lot of energy to stay ahead of financial needs, work scheduling, travel arrangements, and syncing of schedules. But isn’t that life in general? Outcome requires input. Result requires effort.
I’ll be shifting my efforts come January. I’ll be living life in a different way.
When Rob and I did the sky dive in June, we were each hooked to a professional jumper, we each had a buddy who did the work for us. We were along for the ride. This time, we’ll have to hold on to each other. We’ll be doing the work ourselves. But I think we’ll be safe. We’ve held hands before, through some pretty rough rides. This one should be good…just have to take the first step out.