Deciding to move involved weighing the positive and negatives, and figuring out if it was worth giving up so much. Here are a few of the things we will be gaining by moving out.
This was a big one for me. Though the farm itself belongs to my own family, and my siblings all live within a couple of hours of it, my husband also has immediate family in The City, and we’ll be closer to family in yet another province. In the last few years, the only trips we’ve been able to make to see family has been for funerals. My husband hadn’t seen his family in years, and with his condition deteriorating, the road trips we used to make in the past were no longer an option. Being at the farm means that my husband will be able to see his father more often. With the medical emergency that had him flying out a week earlier than planned, that aspect of it really hit home. So this one is a HUGE gain.
I’d made a couple of trips out over the years and stayed at the farm with my father. Despite the fact that I was there for funereal reasons, the peace and quiet of the farm was soul healing. I spent much valued time just sitting at the table with my father over a cup of tea, enjoying the peace. I slept better there than I had in years. I hadn’t even realized how bad my sleep had become until I finally got some good sleep. My younger daughter, who has had constant sleep problems, has also found huge improvements while at the farm. Even my husband, who is sleeping on a makeshift bed until the movers bring our stuff over, and is in constant pain, has mentioned being able to get better sleep.
While the house itself is smaller, we will have so much more space. The main yard is huge. There is the spruce grove that has prevented our getting internet. A maple grove. Fruit trees. A huge garden area (we don’t plan to garden right away, but it’ll be an option), plus several smaller gardens closer to the house. When we do reach the point of being able to garden, I intend to go with raised bed gardening for accessibility. There is even a second house in the yard. It wasn’t supposed to stay there, but my parents never got around to moving it to a more permanent location. All that, and still lots of open space in the yard!
There are the usual outbuildings; barn, cattle pens and hay yards. All of which are basically used for storage right now. The land itself is rented out, so it’s not like we’ll be doing any actual farming, though there is enough land around the house and main yard that we could still probably get a few chickens. My daughter will finally be able to get a dog, and we might even get some alpacas or angora goats at some point, for their fibre. We would have the space to set up bee hives, if we wanted. We shall see, after we’ve settled in. We’ll have the land and space for it. Heck, just being able to light up the fire pit and have a wiener roast, as I remember we did quite often when I was a child, is something we look forward to!
This one is still a bit in the air. The farm is my mother’s, but she can’t live there anymore. We will be living there “rent free” in exchange for taking over the expenses. The problem is, we’re only guessing at what those will be. So while theoretically, we’ll save a lot of money by not having to pay housing charges (the housing co-op equivalent to rent or mortgage), there will be extra expenses that come from being so isolated, plus having to drive so far out for medical care. Personally, as long as we can stop slowly falling behind, as we have been in the city, I’ll consider it a win. Plus, we’ll be saving my mother the expense, so it’s win-win for her and us.
Introverts will understand this one. LOL
We will have neighbours. There is actually someone living across the road from the farm. I think. The family that lived there when I was growing up are long gone, and I am pretty sure there is someone living there now. I don’t imagine we’d ever cross paths unless we go out of our way to do so. Plus, I have a brother that lives nearby. “Nearby” in farm-speak, is about a quarter of a mile away. All other neighbours are about a mile away or more.
Basically, it means we’ll only see people if we really want to. I will certainly miss the friendships I’ve developed here; it’s the first time we’ve lived anywhere long enough for that to even happen. But we will no longer have that ever present population of people around, whether we want to see them or not. And it’s people that have been the major source of stress in my life. Toxic people that I just haven’t been able to get away from, for various reasons. It’ll mean getting away from threats and intimidation and manipulation. It’ll mean those people will no longer have any say over our lives anymore.
This one is a bit harder to quantify. We’ll have more freedom to make choices in our lives, simply because we won’t be in a housing co-op anymore (which are run by a board, committees and voting), and we won’t be renting (which means the owner makes all the decisions). So we don’t have other people telling us what we can or can’t do within our own home. We’ll be able to leave the curtains open and not worry about who can see in. We can do things on the property without having to get permission from someone else, first. Sure, we won’t actually own the farm, but the house needs work, and we’ll be a direct part of the process, rather than having to go along with whatever some board committee or landlord has decided we can have. No more politicking to get improvements, and being fought or sabotaged every step of the way.
It’s all of that, and yet there is something more, that just doesn’t translate well into words.