There are many choices we make in our lives every single day. We choose what is important to us by what we surround ourselves with and what we spend time on. I am a stay at home mom, a military wife, a Christian, a women with dreams and ambitions. But I am bogged down, stuck in one location, and have very little quality time for my family that I cook and clean for on a daily basis. I love my family and we have made a choice to have me stay at home. We don’t regret it but financially it’s too much on us lately.
Compared to many Americans, we are minimalists. We live in a 2 bedroom, 1 bath rental home about 720 square feet. We use a little of the basement and park on the road. Our boys share a room and our dining room table is in our living room. I try to keep a neat and tidy house, even with 2 boys living there. I spend most my days just keeping up with it. About 2 days a week, the house looks amazing! Then I tend to burn out or feel like I am not spending enough quality time with my boys. The other 5 days of the week just look like a tornado went through with clean-but-not-folded clothes, shoes, dirty dishes, random toys, and paperwork scattered throughout.
Between the stress of keeping up financially, house work, very little quality time with our kids, and almost constant burnout, my husband and I knew it was time for a major change. Many asked why we dropped out of our college classes and honestly the answer is just that we are burned out. We have spent most of the last 9 years of our marriage either serving our country (hubby is Army) or attempting to get a college degree. Hubby was going for pastoral degree and I was taking ASL classes. Not that these are bad things to want to obtain, it’s just that we haven’t really done much for us. Ever.
When is our life going to get good? When are we going to chase our dreams and travel the United States? We can’t keep waiting around for our finances to finally fall into place. We can’t keep making excuses. This past September, my step-dad was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. Since then I have had an older friend go in for surgery and the next day have a stroke. She is not the same at all. In March my husband nearly wrapped our truck around a pole and a couple weeks back, a friend in her 30s had a brain aneurysm. With all these things happening lately, we are realizing that there is no better time than now. Life is not guaranteed.
So what did we do about it? We bought a 37 ft 1996 Ford Southwind Class A RV. We are moving into it full time and selling nearly every thing that won’t fit in it. There are a few sentimental items that my in-laws agreed to store for us – a kid’s rocking chair and a kid’s table with two chairs my grandparents gave me when I was younger. Everything else is either going in the RV, being sold, given away or thrown away. It is quite drastic but I really can’t wait! I am tired of telling my 8 year old, “We can play after we finish our chores.” I don’t want him looking back and only having a few memories of fun as a family.
So what is our plan? We plan to mostly boondock the first 2 years. Boondocking is basically parking for free. We will have to dump our waste and fill up on water and gas now and again. Our electric is ran off the generator which uses the RV’s gas. We also have propane for the stove and fridge. We plan to use our membership to the local rec center for longer showers. The rec center has swimming, a walking track, workout classes, workout room, and the local library will give us things to do when the weather is bad.
What will we do with our time? Be together as a family – exploring Ohio for now, hiking, swimming, playing at the park, visiting family, playing board games, reading, resting, and just enjoying life. When school starts in the fall, I will be homeschooling our oldest. I home schooled him for Kindergarten and 1st grade in Texas and in Tennessee. He repeated 1st grade this past year at a Christian school in Ohio because he was struggling with reading. He is now doing amazing and keeps a log of all the books he has read! Our youngest is 16 months old and is getting into everything. Surprisingly, it is easier to keep an eye on him in the RV than in a house. He loves going different places so RVing will suit him just fine.
So this is where are right now. In limbo between the RV and the house. In the middle of downsizing and moving on with a different chapter in our lives, a new adventure. We will eventually get there. We will eventually have an empty house to clean before we go. We will make that RV a home. I am sure we will also downsize many more times in the future. My question to you is: Are you happy with your life?