I don’t know if it’s the whole situation with my father in law dying so young or what, but I’ve been thinking lately about how I really want to live my life. The way I envisioned it ten, or even five years ago is not the same as I am picturing it now.
I’ve always felt a little up in the air about whether I wanted to live in a city or not. I always liked the idea of a city just because it’s close to everything and there is stuff to do, but deep down I think I always knew that I am a country (well mountain really) girl at heart. The things that the city offers are not really things that make my soul happy. Most of that stuff involves eating food that is no good for you and spending money that you really shouldn’t on things that you don’t need. Not really a place I would be ultimately happy living. And this is probably completely neurotic, but in every zombie, alien and terrorist flick, they always start out in the cities where people have nowhere to run and it just looks horrendous. If I wasn’t claustrophobic, I might just consider an underground bunker in case of one of those situations should arise. :)
My husband recently wrote this post http://www.jamesdelles.com/tinyhouse/ about wanting to live in a tiny house. And the more I think about it, the more wonderful it seems. Granted, living in a really tiny house would be next to impossible with our two kids, but I am thinking that a house under 1000 square feet would be completely possible. I used to dream of a big huge house with a pool and a big kitchen island, lots of bedrooms, etc. But I don’t want that anymore. What I see when I look at those houses now is entrapment. Lots of cleaning, lots of repairs, lots of worry and lots of money. And what do you have to do in order to make all the money to pay for that big house? Work. A lot. So that you’re probably never even there enjoying the monstrosity that you built. And then of course you have to fill that house up with crap. That costs money too. Then you worry about people robbing you of all your awesome stuff so you have to pay for a security system and lots of insurance. Ugh. It sounds like a prison sentence.
I grew up in a very small house. My mom had the right idea. She bought what she could afford. I couldn’t say how many square feet it is, but I’m pretty sure it’s probably less than 800. And I survived just fine. It was always clean, warm, and comfortable and everyone still had their own space. I never felt deprived. Right now, I look around and realize that an entire tiny house and then some can fit in our living room. And as much as I love my house and don’t regret buying it, I am really looking forward to a house that doesn’t have enough space to bring a lot of junk into it. I look forward to my daughters realizing they can live very happily on a lot less. I don’t want to raise them to be entitled and spoiled. I want them to grow up with a mindfulness in their living, with an idea how what they do and buy and consume affects the earth and their own futures.
What I really picture when I think of my ideal living is waking up in the morning in a house that I don’t have to spend hours cleaning, with just enough clothes to get through a week so I don’t have loads upon loads of laundry, having a cup of coffee on my porch while watching colorful birds fly through the numerous trees in my “yard”. But I don’t really want a yard because yards chain us to yard work. I would like to have a garden that I don’t kill, eat fresh fruits and veggies, read a book in a little comfy corner of my small house and then venture out to take some photographs. It sounds like heaven to me. Maybe this is my empty nest life, I don’t know, but one of these days, I would really like to live like this. I want to be far away from temptation of consumerism and poor eating habits. I want to be far away from asshole neighbors that have no respect for your peace and quiet or personal property. I want to be somewhere with little to no traffic noise and lots and lots of trees. A babbling brook would make it even more perfect!
I just want to be able to let stuff go that I have grown accustomed to in my life but that are not important and in fact make my life more stressed and unhappy. I want to do more for the environment like fitting my house with solar panels and walking places a lot more often. I want to raise my daughters with a sense of peace in their souls and a confidence that they don’t need to get sucked into popular society and what they think is cool. I would also love to live so much more simply so that money is not a constant stressor but a means to live my simple life. I don’t need more than enough. I just need enough.