Monday, July 16, 2012

Our last three years

No one can roll with the punches like this Mama!  I can tell you the forces that be have been hard core testing me through these last 3 years.  I'm going to lay out a time line for you all to understand a little more of the chaos that I call life.  I will expound on certain subjects more as time permits.  Through all of this, I still get up everyday with a smile on my face, thankful that I have it to spend with my wonderful husband and my amazing children.  I wouldn't trade a day for anything in the world!

February 2009, I was working for an architectural/engineering/construction firm as a Project Management Assistant and Office Manager.  I was working 40 hours a week for 7 months by that point, even though the company was treating me like I was part time and not giving me any benefits.  I was becoming more and more unhappy with the treatment and when I tried to talk to my COO about it, I was laid off 'due to company cut backs'.  Yeah....right.  So I took advantage of my new found freedom and spent it catching up with Mommy things like school functions and after noon ice cream trips.

We spent June and July 2009 traveling to see family and my 10th High School Reunion where I first declared to the world that I had become a "Trophy Wife".  I loved seeing people's reactions.  That's when I became The Trophy Wife.  Later that month, after coming home from visiting family, I found out that I was unexpectedly pregnant with Little Man.  That is when I became a blogger.  I started my personal blog so that family that was away from us could stay in the loop with this pregnancy.  Throughout that pregnancy, I was unable to find a new job because there was always a 'more qualified candidate'....basically because it's illegal to tell a pregnant lady that you don't want to hire her because she's going to need time off right away.

Little Man was born March 2010.  After scary complications with a prenatal arrhythmia, his birth was perfect and he was perfect.  He developed strabismus (lazy eye) at 6 months, but has been easy to treat and it's not too severe.

Thanksgiving 2010, The RacDad was laid off from his job.  This is really the point where our lives went from vanilla to a roller coaster of emotions and chaos.  It was a wonderful time to be home together, enjoying our kids...but it has led to a long series of unfortunate events ever since.  Within those unfortunate events though, we have also had some really amazing and wonderful things happen too.

January 2011, our relationship with The RacDads parents is becoming more strained with the stress from both of us being out of work and the unknown for our future.  Historically, there have been difficult times with my MIL that affects my relationship with her and how I calculate my actions (or reactions, if you will.)

February 2011, we found out that we were unexpectedly pregnant again!  Through all of the heartache and hardship that we were experiencing at the time, we were more than ecstatic to welcome our little Peanut into our family.  We knew that it was not the best time for it to happen, but we didn't really have a choice in the matter.  We were ready to open our hearts to a new miracle.

March 2011, Little Man turned 1 years old.  The RacDad interviewed with a company that we had been tracking for years.  They were building a new branch of their business very close to where I grew up and where most of my family lived.  It also was closer to The RacDad's family too.  Their new branch was set to open that summer and we were trying desperately to get the chance to help it open up.

May 2011, The RacDad was hired!  He started work 3 hours away from home and I stayed with the two kids until Sweet Pea was out of school.  Pregnant with a toddler and a 9 year old...packing up the house and getting it ready to put on the market.  Crazy busy!

June 2011,  Sweet Pea turned 9 years old.  We listed our house with a 'friend'.  We also rented a storage unit and put all of our belongings in it, except for the large furniture to stage the house and one truck load of things to take to my Grandparent's house where we were planning to spend a month or two while the house was getting sold.

July 2011, I found a new OB, a new hospital to deliver at, new doctor for my kids and started looking for new houses to buy.  (We were optimistic!)

August 2011, the house was not getting any all.  And hardly any showings.  Our Realtor really dropped the ball.  We needed to figure out where Sweet Pea was going to go to school and where we were going to live....and SOON!  We ended up firing the Realtor because of some really heinous things that she did that shot our chances of selling the house out of the water.  We also had to replace all four tires on our car because The RacDad was driving 150 miles every day, 5 days a week, and needed our vehicle to be reliable on the road.

September 2011, we moved into my parent's house (next door to my Grandparents) and we tried to sell the house on our own.  Thinking that we could undersell everyone else by not having to cover Realtor's fees (and after having such a horrible experience with our Realtor), we decided to give it a go.  But, no one buys houses that late in the year...that's when the market slows down going into winter.  I was also 8 months pregnant and soon after told that I could no longer travel that far away from my doctor.  So we ended up hiring a new Realtor by the end of the month.  We found the van of my dreams and purchased it; we were almost ready for the baby to come.

October 2011, Peanut was born!  I had an extremely difficult emergency cesarean that you can read about here.

December 2011,  we had to fire Realtor #2 because she had not shown the house even ONE time at all in the 4 months that she had it listed.  What a waste!  The price had been dragged down and we no longer had savings to cover the mortgage.  We also couldn't afford two housing payments, so we were still living with my parents.  We had to find a shark for a Realtor and we had to do it fast.  We desperately needed SOMEONE who could help us!  And we found her!  (Check out this website if you are ever considering buying or selling real estate.  The people endorsed through here are amazing!)

January 2012, The holidays were done and we all survived them.  I was finally recovering from the intensive surgery that I had with Peanut.  We also started on the path of selling our house through a short sale.  There was no way that we could try to sell the house for fair market value at this point.  We weighed the pros and cons and realized that through the inability to sell our house in the last year that our hands were tied.  I turned 31!  On that day, we finally got our first offer on the house!  Unfortunately, it was too low for our bank to accept it through the short sale requirements, so it was declined.

February 2012, we had to replace all four tires on the car again.  The car's ball joints went out and caused the tires to wear on the inside so bad that they weren't safe to use.  So we got a whole 5 months out of them and they were expensive tires too.  So we replaced them with the same kind and hoped that they would last a little longer this time.

March 2012, Little Man turned 2!  I can't believe how fast time has been flying!  We started looking for apartments to rent because the 3 hour a day commute that The RacDad had been doing for the last 10 months was getting to be way too much of a financial burden.

April 2012, I started my part time out of the house job that I absolutely LOVE!  The next day, we moved our stuff from our house into our apartment.  The moving company tried to extort $400 from us and drove off with all of our belongings still in the truck.  Luckily, The RacDad followed the truck (with 911 on the phone!) and was able to work it out with the company's owners.  We got our stuff moved in and didn't get over charged for it.  Even though the bill turned out to be $2000 more than we initially anticipated, it was legitimate charges that we owed.  Two weeks after we got into the apartment, we moved our stuff from my parent's house in.  Sweet Pea stayed with Grandma to finish the last 3 weeks of school.  At the end of the month, Little Man was rushed to the hospital and admitted because of croup.  The next night, The RacDad was hit by a drunk driver; totaling our car.  Then Peanut got croup too, but was treated at the doctor's office.

May 2012, was spent with all the kids getting settled into our new place, me getting used to working again, dealing with insurance companies, lawyers, doctors and headaches from the predicament that we found ourselves in because of one person's poor decision making.  We were down a car and luckily, my parents let us borrow theirs so that we could get to work and still have the van available if we needed to transport the kids while the other was at work.

June 2012, Sweet Pea turned 10!  Double Digits!  Still dealing with the aftermath of the accident.  Still trying to unpack boxes and get the apartment settled.  Seems to be a never ending obstacle.  We had a second offer on the house!!  Then, the buyer backed out after the bank gave us a hard time over being short by $980....yep, the bank was throwing out the whole deal over $980.  Our Realtor even said that she'd take that out of her commission!  That was above and beyond anything that I would expect from her...she's amazing!  But the buyer didn't want to deal, so they threw in the towel.

July 2012.....Here we are....I've had a wonderful time with family and friends who were visiting my parents.  Still unpacking...trying to sell baby gear and clothes that we won't use anymore.  Looking forward to the first trip out to see The RacDad's family and our friends since the week before we found out that we were pregnant with Little Man.  It will be so much fun to take the kids to see everyone and introduce the two little ones to their Great Grandma.  Still trying to find a car to replace the one we lost.  Still dealing with litigation concerning the accident (which I will tell you about once it is all done.)  Still dealing with the house and that headache.  Our credit finally tanked....the bank reported our lack of paying the mortgage, which we had to do to qualify for the short sale and so that we could afford to live on our own again.  At least I was able to put the new tires from the car onto the van!  That saved me a little money and I now have really great tires on my awesome van.  (It's the little things that make me smile.)

Next month, The RacDad and I are celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary.  Even through all of this chaos, I love him more and more as every day passes.  If there's one thing that I've learned through all of this, it is to love and cherish your family...your husband and your children...because they are all that matters in life.  That is the key to happiness....not things, but loving the people that you share your life with.


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