It's been 9 months since my husband suddenly passed away. I was 33 at the time and we have a 2 year old little girl. We just moved to FL and bought our 'forever' home. We had only been here for 1 year before he passed. We were not prepared at all for his passing, I don't have any life insurance to fall back on, I had to go back to work full time because I was a stay at home mom. My sister who was recently divorced moved in with me so that is super helpful with paying the mortgage but it's not a long term fix. She will eventually move out and walk her own path. I know everyone's situation is different, but what have you done with your home? Did you stay or go? There are some days when my brain and my heart align and I know the financially right thing to do is sell our home. It's a very large house that we planned to have more children in and the utilities and maintenance is a lot for me to handle alone. Now I feel like its a house (definitely not a home since it stopped being that when he passed) of broken dreams. I love that I am reminded of him here but I also hate it because he passed away here and on my bad days certain things trigger my PTSD. I'm anxious to make a decision that I can't take back and am so torn as for what the right move will be.
I used the same phrase with the house we had together - broken dreams. I felt somewhat stagnated when I lived in that house. In the fall of 2015, I decided to sell and buy something smaller. I was lucky to find a townhouse in the community where I work. I was lucky the house sold! It's just me, no children. I made this decision after 2 years and it was the right decision for me. The townhouse I live in now shares a wall with a couple in their 40s and 50s. They don't have children. He does all of the mowing, plowing, and any maintenance I need. I pay him - it's so worth it. I just call him and he fits me in. I've already talked to him about painting my interior this fall and he says that is great. (Now I just have to choose colors!)
For me at that time it was the right decision. I too called the house a house and not a home. It just didn't feel like that anymore. This place does feel like home.
I guess I would suggest you stick it out with your sister. When that doesn't work anymore, then make a decision.
I am proof that things will work out for you! Buying and selling at the same time is a roller coaster ride and at times I didn't think it would work out. But it did. And I am very happy in this home.
DH and I moved into the home where I now live 2 years ago. I was 62 and he was 77 with chronic health issues, so I knew I'd likely end up alone in the house He died last November. I love the house and have no plans to move although at some point I'm likely to hire out mowing the lawn since it's a steep slope to the back yard and a heck of a cardio workout.
You need to factor costs of moving into your decision; in addition to realtor costs, we spent far more than I would have expected fixing things in the house we sold and making changes to the one we bought. Unhappy surprises included a $3K repair bill for a clogged drain in the basement of the one we sold, replacing the entire HVAC system in the one we bought (we knew it was 20 years old but hoped it would last a few years) and higher-than-expected costs of enclosing a porch and replacing some windows. Oh, and the bank wouldn't lend us all we wanted because I'd retired only a year before- I suspect all they considered was DH's SS and my $900/month pension even though our net worth went to up the year after my retirement. If you just went back to work recently you may have the same issue. They always say you should wait a year before doing anything drastic- this is a good time to do research.
I've stayed in my home. I used the process of changing it from "our" home to "my" home as a catalyst for my grieving; arranging the rooms the way I wanted them and going trough Sharon's possessions deciding what to keep for myself and what to pass on. Having said that the house was in need of complete renovation and redoing every room is not far off moving to a new house. If your life is a life of broken dreams at the moment (and after nine months that is almost certain) then no house is going to feel like home.
It sounds like your sister has given you some breathing space so you don't have to make that decision straight away. If you can face it you could start house hunting just to see what's out there and how you feel about moving. You might find that there's nothing out there to tempt you out of your house, you might find somewhere that feels like the right place to start building new dreams for you and your daughter. You don't have to decide to move before you start exploring the options, you just need to feel strong enough to look around.
Interesting observation on changing things- I've been doing a little of that, too, and so has my recently-widowed father. A month or so after Mom died he told me he'd replaced the clothes hamper ("it had a hole in it") and bought new sheets. Those were the kinds of things Mom always did. I've thinned out the books some more and will be changing the downstairs room I used as an office into a guest BR since I can use the main-floor BR as an office now that DH is gone- that's where his computer is. (It's still "his" computer to me.) That will give my son and his family a little more room when they come to visit. I'm also dropping Comcast in favor of Google Fiber Internet plus MagicJack plus Netflix since I no longer need sports programming!
DH died in a hospital bed that was placed beside the one we shared for so many years. It will be difficult to leave that space when I move out but I hope that will be a long time from now.
It's not silly to feel that she's still there, anymore than it would have been silly to feel like she was around when she was alive but out of sight in a different room.
I chose to use reorganising and renovating my house so that it didn't feel like it was Sharon's house any more, it was the right thing for me at that particular time, but it was a brutal, painful process and I came out of it a different person (which was the point of doing it really). I'm remarried with a son now and if I was widowed again I could see myself making the same choice as you, keeping the feeling that my wife is in the next room.
You sound like you made your choice with your eye's open, and as far as your wellbeing goes that's what really matters.
I think it's wonderful that you are able to stay in your home. If I could stay here I would but I know in my heart it would not be long term. We never had the opportunity to speak about it since the thought never crossed my mind that I would suddenly lose my husband at 33 years old. I feel like he will follow me where ever we go, I'm just going to tell him come on honey let's go. I feel my husband in our home but I've traveled and I've felt him with me as well. I truly believe that at the end of the day our partners are happy with whatever decisions we make that bring us happiness if that makes sense.
We never talked about it. But I felt very strongly after a couple of years that I could not stay in the house. It seemed to be full of his ghosts and unfinished dreams. All my enthusiasm about gardening and planning other outdoor things vanished.
I started to look in fall of 2015 for a place. I was very very very lucky to find the townhouse I did. It is in the town I work in, 1 minute drive from where I work. The couple on the other side of the wall are fantastic. He takes care of all the grounds and he has done numerous tasks for me (like replacing the toilets).
I have been enjoying putting together this home of mine. I just recently inherited some of my parents' furniture so have had to figure that out.
I do feel he is with me and he often very often said - Do what you gotta do. So I know he would have blessed this move.
Everyone's path is different - this was the right choice for me and I feel very blessed.