This has been a year of ups, downs, exploration, joy, pain, choices, decisions and change. I have seen my share of sad, okay let me say it outright, my share of down on my knees on the floor and begging for mercy depression. I have spent far too much of my time isolating myself, allowing my introvert free reign, while the rest of my life suffered the consequences. I have spent far too much time, trying to catch up with myself, in too many ways and spent too much of the past year afraid.


Afraid of losing all I have fought for.

Afraid of being alone.

Afraid of being hurt.

Afraid of …. Well afraid of far too many things to list.

The funny thing about being afraid, fear absolutely paralyzes you. Fear prevents you from making choices, whether good or bad, fear stops your ability to choose.

I have known for a very long time I needed to make some life altering choices. There were things in my world weighing me down. The first and likely the largest was my house. I don’t know why I have hung onto this monstrosity for so long after my marriage ended. I have spent thirteen years here, longer than anywhere else in my adult life. I do not love it, some days I hate it. It hasn’t been a home in years, if ever. It has been a menace to my health and well-being for at least five of the thirteen years I have been here. It is far too big for one person, by about 2,000 sq. ft., well maybe not quite that much but it is far too big for just me.

So I had to make decisions, for my health mental and otherwise:

Decision #1: My house went on the market 10 days ago.

Decision #2: I am not going to buy right away. Instead I am going to put what I decide to keep in storage and rent for 6 months while I find a new home that pleases me. This will be the first time in my adult life I buy a home with just me in mind, where only my desires, my likes, my wants are taken into account. I am going to take my time.

Decision #3: I am not only going to significantly downsize my home, I am going to downsize my ‘stuff’. This includes letting go of books, CD’s, clothes and other ‘stuff’ I have carried across town, across the state, across the nation and across continents. I will keep what I love, what is meaningful, what belongs in the life I intend to create.

Decision #4: I am paying off 80% of debt (assumes a close to full price offer on house) which will allow me to make different decisions about work and contracts. Only thing that will remain will be 12509264_1549410212015766_3412091072243008118_ncar and student loans (woe is me I will pay these till I die).

So here I sit, in my very clean house. It has been shown a few times since it went on the market. There have been four open houses too. Every morning I wake up and run around like a mad woman, making certain everything is in its place, nothing is hanging out of a drawer and all the animals are in their kennels before I leave the house. Every single day, I hope the odds are with me and someone will like all the upgrades I have made and they will say, ‘Yes, this is the one I want’.

In the meantime, the contract I have been working since last May is hanging by a thread. I am still working but not enough hours. I am looking for the next one and hoping hard it comes soon. I am hoping all the stars align and the house sells, the next contract is one that I have been talking to for a couple of weeks now and will give me a great opportunity to do something really different in a new / old city for 18 months at a great rate. If not this one, well there are a couple of others that might be great also, right here in town. I am hoping all the stars align and maybe one would lead to a full time job where I could maybe, just maybe end my career without any more contracts. Wouldn’t that be better than what I have been doing for far too many years?

So, as I make life altering choices my focus shifts. Some of it hurts. Some of it is simply scary. Sometimes I wake in the middle of the night and think to myself, ‘what the hell, what are you doing, are you stupid or simply crazy?’ I think all of that, then I simply shrug my shoulders and think, ‘Well, it won’t be the first time you have had to start over’.


  1. frigginloon says:

    Cookie dough in oven , coffee brewing. Evidently, best way to sell a house. 🙂

  2. Good for you Val for making these decisions as it sounds like they are exactly what you need to do to move forward. It is scary, yes, but I find some of my best decisions have been ones that have scared me unlike anything else! Sending love xx

  3. Wow, Val. I so admire how you are taking control and taking positive steps to make your future what you want it to be. Sending good thoughts that the house sells and the next job/contract is fabulous!

  4. Dearest Val..
    You are following your inner guidance.. and when we do that even though it may seem scary.. I know you know deep down you are following your heart..
    Downsizing in all respects of house size and ‘Things’ we own is again another move your intuition is telling you to do..
    Funny as I read your post Val.. as while I have been absent this week from WP, and on a day it was raining and I wasn’t in the garden.. I chose to dig deep into my wardrobe and fill up charity bags .. Books and CD’s are the next on the list of thinning out.. 🙂
    You will be guided again.. just keep on listening to your heart and what feels right in your gut ..
    Change is happening and you are now taking control 🙂
    So much love your way dear friend..
    Sue xxx

  5. Here’s hoping that all the stars align – you get to sell the house at a good price and land a nice new contract.

  6. Can’t wait to hear about your next chapter ☺️

  7. Change is liberating. I found a great place to go through big life changes was at Option Institute on the east coast. I volunteered there through my divorce but plan to return for one of their programs. I felt inclined to share. It’s literally like happy camp. 😌💙💚

  8. Here’s hoping you get a sales nibble quickly, Valentine. Best of luck with everything.

    • Thanks Carrie. I am hoping also. People are strange you know? Nibbles, testing the water and trying my patience.


      • My step-brother was selling his place in California, and one of the people who came to look at it asked what the pool water tasted like. (?!) So yes, people are indeed strange!

  9. Change is hard and pulling up stakes and starting over not fun, especially when you’re over 50. It helps that this is your choice, not circumstance forcing you into a corner, to make decisions you fight making. At this age, you need less. Why spend your energy and kill yourself looking after something that’s more way more than you need? It takes time and planning to get your head around it, but I believe in the end the change will be a relief. Wishing you all the best, Val. ❤ ❤ ❤

    • I think Tess, it was something I needed to come to for myself and by myself. It couldn’t be something that was forced on me. Though truthfully, I think there are parts of the decision that were not just my head and heart, at least it feels like me still making them.

      Yes, it is hard but still it is mine.

  10. Is the house too big for just one person, or too big because you’re there by yourself now? Either way, sometimes we have to undergo major changes in our lives to get to a better place. Such changes are often nerve-wracking, yet necessary. Best wishes on whatever course you take, Val.

    • I think it is more that I am here by myself and it simply echos now. The home it was supposed to be, well it simply isn’t that and can’t be that. It haunts me.

  11. Val you sound like you’re in a great place to do this. You’re ready. And I envy you.

    My husband announced in November, sans discussion, that he is retiring THIS year. Our house is too big, also, and too expensive. We have lots of land that he can no longer take care of. He hates his work (and always has). I get it. But I’m not ready. Our house is in need of repairs and it is filled to the brim with crap — we are all three packrats, and we are storing all his mother’s and sister’s stuff . His mother is 90 and lives not far. He wants me to kill myself getting the house clean/redecorated/repaired so that we can abandon his mother, toss our son out of the basement and relocate to somewhere else (as yet undetermined) where I can continue to work from the new home (remotely) because of course we will need health insurance, while he walks the dog and reads the newspaper. So you touched a nerve here … sorry. I’ll shut up now.

  12. I have yet to speak with someone who’s had a great start to this year, such a lot of changes for so many of us and many unwelcome, I hope the stars do align for you and this really is the start of better times

    • This year has been difficult for so many people. Like you I have spoken to many who are having a tough time, changes pounding at that door and no way to take them in comfortably. My decisions, at least these are my stake in the ground. We can only do so much, then we have to jump the fate train and hang on.

      I hope you are well.

  13. Mr. Militant Negro says:

    Reblogged this on The Militant Negro™.

  14. Well, what about 3000 sft? Would that be even worse? Let me tell you this, from personal experience, hang on to it… yes, houses sometimes seem less than homes.. but in the end, that is all you have.. Just my opinion… feel free to diss it or ignore it 😀 But, it could be an asset some day when the troubles are over.. not only that, it gets you to love something inanimate for all the memories it contains.. on that other hand, if the memories are bad, then you may safely get rid of it.. but keeping in mind that the bad memories of today are tomorrow’s nostalgic reminders..
    I am sure I am dispensing bad advice (financially), but see if you can think about it twice..

    • Many people say hang on, but honestly 4,200 sq ft for one person is too much. I don’t have good memories here just difficult ones. I have enough physical impairment that taking care of it is too hard, I cannot afford it anymore. Not physically, not financially, not any kind of way. I will be 60 next year and I simply don’t want the burden of this house weighing me down. I need a new start for the rest of my life.

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