I’ve been pretty quiet on this blog lately. In truth, I’ve written a couple of posts but didn’t publish them because they were just so negative.
I’m now going to say something that I’ve done a pretty good job of not saying for a while… 2018 has been a bad year.
I generally like to blog about the positive stuff in my life. That’s the fun stuff… the stuff I want to remember when I’m older. But I’m not doing myself any favours by ignoring how stressful and anxiety-inducing the last 11 months have been.
It started in Q1, when my wife and I uprooted ourselves from our first home. We moved in with our parents for a week until our new house was ready to move into… The previous owners were not particularly helpful during the unnecessarily long, stressful, fiddly six months it took to buy their house.
We were the ones who made all the concessions. As a side note… don’t ever buy a property on Purple Bricks. The sellers may save on commission, but as the buyer you end up doing all the chasing up. This basically makes you look like the bad guy trying to pressure someone out of their home. There’s also no estate agent to oversee the transition on moving day, which is why we were left waiting for several hours for the previous owners to get ready for the handover.
With all that stress behind us, I can honestly say I do love the house and we’re still in the process of making it a wonderful home. It’s just taking a lot of work and time.
The previous owners neglected many things that need some love and attention. We’ve had flooding in the kitchen, creaky floorboards that need to be nailed down, old doors and windows that needed to be replaced, cobwebs to clear up (who doesn’t clean away cobwebs in their own home?), and carpets so thin they may as well not even be there. Fortunately a new boiler and pipework is at least keeping the house warm and cosy without any more leaks (fingers crossed!)
The move and the works have eaten up all my holiday time. The stress has affected my concentration at the office. As a result, my work targets have been shot to hell and my performance is the worst it has been since I first joined the company 11 years ago. It is not a good time at work right now, which is ironically what’s creating a lot of the stress I feel.
This is before I even get to worrying about our son Zack when he has been sick. Not to mention the times I got sick because he was sick. You might hope that being a parent would earn you a bit of sympathy or understanding from your employers.
Alas, the unspoken truth of the private sector is that employees with babies are a burden on business. How dare we take time off to continue the survival of the human race?
I wish I could say the end was in sight, but we still have a lot of work to do on the house. A lot of it is going to be disruptive too. I’m mainly worried about balancing this with my decreasing performance at work and the challenges of raising a toddler.
First world problems? Yes, I’m sorry. I know these are first world problems, but they still stress me out. Everyone says “don’t buy a place that needs doing up.” I’d like to add to that… Don’t buy a place that needs doing up, especially if you are a working parent.
That being said, I have no regrets. I love my family and I love my new home. Many people say ‘good things take time’ and this year certainly proves that.
I’m going to try and stay focused on the positive things. There have been some lovely experiences this year, and I keep scrolling through my blog to remind myself of that.
In the meantime, I’ll continue to work hard and savour the precious moments of fun and joy as they come.
Thank you for reading – if in fact you still are. I know nobody likes to read a rant. But I feel better for having gotten this off my chest.
Take care of yourselves, folks.