Who would have thought a book could change your life? Well, me for one. Because ya know, I’m the poster child for bookworms everywhere. And what bookworm hasn’t had their life changed by a book?
Back in February I read Before I Called You Mine and although I only gave it 3.5 stars the first go-around I thought about it so much that I ended up reviewing it again in August and giving it 4.5 stars. The book is about adoption and prompted me to begin praying about maybe adopting in the future. Logically I knew the first step towards adoption would be to live in a house, because although I could have very happily lived in my little camper for the rest of my life, I didn’t foresee an adoption agency being okay with that.
So in February I began praying about buying a house. You know, sometime in the future. Like two or three years from now. Maybe when I was a bit more mature, had saved a lot more money, and paperwork didn’t competely freak me out any more.
There was one little catch – to say house hunting was the last thing I wanted to do was a misnomer because that implies it was on the list of things I wanted to do – albeit at the bottom. And in reality, it wasn’t even close to being on the list – not one little iota. I’m not sure what my adversion is to house hunting, but I have a strong one. Perhaps it has to do with not liking choices? Or at the sheer magnatude of the decision I’d be making? Or how in the world I’d ever weigh all the pros and cons?
But I had two things going for me. 1) I wasn’t looking to buy a house for several years – I was just praying for the right one at the right time and 2) I have fantastically good friends who do like house hunting. I simply told those friends (Miss Viviann and Hannah) that they could find a house for me to buy and I’d buy it and we’d all be happy. They were thrilled at the prospect, and so I was set.
Then one weekend in September Miss Viviann and Hannah went on vacation. I spend a lot of time with them so I said good-bye to them on Sunday, and they were arriving back home on Tuesday. That meant Monday was the only day they wouldn’t be around. Well, Sunday night/Monday morning I woke up around 2:00 am and couldn’t get back to sleep. I randomly started scrolling through Facebook and the second post I saw was on a group I’m a part of with my co-workers:
Somehow, as soon as I saw this, I knew it was my future home. I was shocked since I hadn’t even been thinking of moving for a couple of years. But God’s timing is far beyond my own, and looking back I can see little indicators that God was preparing me for the new house for quite some time. Lying in bed I felt nervous excitment building as I asked God to prepare the way if it was the house He had in store for me. It took me a couple more hours to fall asleep, and when I finally did I dreamed about the house. I woke up late – barely in time to get to work – but called my mom nearly right away. Our conversation went something like this:
Me: Mom, I think I found a house to buy. Here’s a link. There’s an open house in two days, can you and Dad maybe come look at it with me?
Mom: I’m sorry honey, we have plans for then.
Me: That’s fine-
Mom: The house looks amazing though, so I just cleared my day and we’ll jump in the car and drive the four hours to look at the house today.
So I contacted the seller (who I know, although not exceedingly well) and asked if we could look at the house. He wasn’t available to show it to us, but gave me the key code and answered a few questions I had about it.
Then I went to work and began my tasks for the day although it was really hard to stay focused. When my boss came in I told him what was going on and he said I could leave work as early as I needed in order to look at the house. (He’s the best boss ever.) During this time I was really not sure what I was supposed to feel, because I had never even imagined I would buy a house in 2020.
It was pouring down rain when I left work, drove through curving, winding roads and got my first glimpse of the house. My parents were stuck in traffic and didn’t arrive for a whole hour after me, which gave me time to walk around the house and begin dreaming. I Facetimed my sister who had just moved to Tennessee and showed her around. I told her that I wished I hadn’t arrived before my parents because up until then I hadn’t cared if I could buy the house or not. But, after an hour of sitting in the stillness by myself, I knew I was going to be really sad if my parents didn’t think it was a good fit for me.
Then my parents arrived. And the next thing I knew we were putting an offer on the house. (When I say “we” what I really mean is that my parent’s were doing the talking for me, but I’m the one who was buying the house.) The seller told us that the faster we could get the offer to him in writing the better because the house had been on the market for less than a day by then, and he’d already gotten several offers. He said he had agreed to show it to one more person that evening, and didn’t feel like he could commit to anything until after they’d seen it, but that he would stop showing it after that person.
I was heading to my adopted parent’s house in Ohio that evening because both my families were meeting up for my 28th birthday party the next day. My parent’s headed back to their house in Ohio, with one of them driving and the other one writing up an email proposal to buy the house. Then they sent it to me and I pulled over at a gas station to send it to the seller and inform him I had an offer in writing sent to him.
Thus started many back and forth conversations via text, email, and phone calls that ended after 11:00 pm that night with me sitting at a gas station on a conference all with my parents and the seller. The seller had gotten five offers on the house that day which was mind-blowing to me. In the end we all agreed that the house was so completely what I was looking for that we’d be willing to pay more than what he asked for it in order to buy it.
I was kinda in shock, kinda terrified, and completely surprised.
I had a hand-shake agreement that I was going to buy a house when twenty-one hours before the possibility of buying a house wasn’t something I was even considering doing for a couple more years. But when I stopped to think about it, all the prayers I’d been praying lined up. God wasn’t surprised, and He’d been slowly preparing me for the last eight months for this step.
The next thing to do was to tell Miss Viviann and Hannah that when they’d been gone for two days on vacation I’d gone and bought the house I’d told them they could pick out for me. I arrived at their house Tuesday night after they got home and was like “Hey, um, I bought a house when you were gone.” They were nearly as surprised as I was, but were happy and supportive nonetheless.
Cue the next six weeks of confusion, paperwork, complicated words I’d never heard before, and realizing that buying a house is a lot of hard work. Thankfully I had people who knew what to do who were willing to help me and I’m immensely grateful to my parents and Miss Viviann for all the work they did to help make buying the house a reality.
The Closing date was set. And it came and went along with a huge amount of stress when we were out of contract and issues had arisen (not between the seller and me, but on the paperwork side of things) that made closing on time impossible. During those days I learned a lot about myself and how I deal with things when they’re outside my control and how I need to learn to lean on God better.
And then the day finally came when we were able to close. November 11th arrived along with a lot of my family who had traveled the four hours to celebrate with me, help me move in, and bring a supply of donuts, cotton candy, and sparkly socks.
Now it’s time for me to go to work, so I’ll have to finish this saga another day. So long for now, my friends!