When The House Doesn’t Sell

It’s been one year.  An entire year.  A year of last minute cleanings.  A year of finding things to do while strangers walked through our home, offering their opinions on everything we should have done differently.  A year of moving the For Sale sign in the front yard in order to meticulously mow, only to return the For Sale sign back to its place.  A year of asking the pot holders to make room in the drawer for all of the loose papers and knick knacks we could forcibly squeeze in for an hour or so.  I can honestly say I have vacuumed more in this past year than I have in my entire life.  I also now know exactly how much you can cram into a dishwasher.  It’s been a year, and after all of the planning and waiting and hoping, the house didn’t sell.

No offers.

No buyers.

And if that isn’t enough, it seems like everybody and their brother has sold their houses lately.  We decided to take it off the market a few months back in hopes of giving our family a normal summer and at this point, we really don’t have plans of putting it back on the market anytime soon.  So I guess that’s it.  It would be easy to look back and say “Well that was pointless” because this year did not bring about the result we had hoped for.  We still own the same house (or it still owns us) and we have no plans of moving.  The more I think about it, however, the more I am left thinking that this whole experience was not pointless.

See, when the house doesn’t sell, there are really two options.  The first option is to live in the thought of all that could have been as you lay to rest any plans you may have created for when the house sells (because certainly the house will sell, right?).  There has certainly been moments like this.  Disappointment has a way of creeping in.  But there is also a second option, and it is where we are trying to land, as hard as it may be.  This option is to learn contentment.  It is to look at all we have and to not say “I want more” but to say “It’s enough.  Where we are at right now is okay.  Maybe someday things will be different, but for now, we will be content.”  If I have learned anything from times of disappointment, like losing a job or the house that didn’t sell, it is that life continues.  We must, however, consciously make the decision to fully participate in that life now, wherever it happens to be.  And for us,

for my family,

for the foreseable future,

life is happening here.


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