Another broad topic. Why are the broad ones always the hardest? Shouldn’t they be the easiest because you have so many options? Oh right. I’m indecisive. That’s why.
I think the best thing I’ve done in a long while was move out of home. This happened over three years ago now. Ever since I was a pre-teen I was convinced I’d move out of my parents place the second I turned 18. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t a bad place by any means. I had food in the fridge when I wanted it, two little doggies, my own room and a Foxtel box all to myself.
Why would you ever move out? I hear you ask.
My sister has the right idea. She’s staying there as long as possible, from what I can gather. Once again showing just how opposite we are.
I’ve always been fiercely independent. I don’t like being told what to do, or that I’m doing things wrong, or basically to even be spoken to when I’m in an introverted mood. My mum is opinionated, talkative and somewhat bossy – I say that in the nicest possible way. Everyone loves her. She has heaps of friends and even my own friends adore her. I’m only telling it like it is – we were just incompatible with living together. The older I got, the worse our relationship became. Almost every weekend, we’d have screaming matches over stupid things and one – or usually both – of us would end up in tears. My dad was always stuck in the middle, seeing both sides and not really sure what to do to help. He really tried, but truth is, he couldn’t fix it. You can’t fix incompatibility.
While house sitting while the next door neighbours were away, I got a taste of freedom I couldn’t go back from. I decided right then and there I wasn’t going back to my parents place. I couldn’t. I’d had a much better headspace away from them and I couldn’t put myself – or the rest of the family – through our volatile relationship any more.
I found out that my colleague was looking to move out too, and we quickly decided to find somewhere together. At this stage I didn’t involve my parents at all. I don’t know why. I mean, I had this fear they’d tell me I can’t move out. I was 21, it’s not like they could stop me, plus I’m sure they were enjoying not having to walk on eggshells while I wasn’t there. Regardless, they didn’t know we were going to inspections every weekend. We found a couple of places near our work and applied for them, not having any real clue of how it all worked. We thought it was like job hunting, and you got knocked back more than accepted, which might be true in some areas and for some properties, but apparently not for the ones we applied for. Or maybe we were just ideal candidates? Either way, we got accepted for both and had a difficult choice. A flashy new apartment with a higher cost, or a not-so-new flat with slightly more space and less cost? We went back and forth and eventually decided the extra money was worth it. The apartment was walking distance from work, had a beautiful walking track, overlooked a lake and had a bus stop right outside (which was lucky because my house mate didn’t drive).
After we signed the paperwork I had to tell my parents. I knew it would be awkward, just springing it on them, but I guess they saw it coming or didn’t mind, because they took it pretty well.
Neither of us had lived out of home before and for some reason, I decided I was buying absolutely everything new. I had the savings for it so it wasn’t a big deal, but I guess it shows how naïve I was going into it. Who buys everything brand new when they move into a rental? Anyway, we hit up a long row of shops and I bought everything in one go. Some stuff – like my dining table – I now hate and wish I’d taken more time on. Most things though I haven’t had second thoughts about (luckily). I love my squishy comfy couch and my smart TV and my hand chair and my washing machine. Plus buying everything at once meant a got a good deal on a lot of it, so it wasn’t all bad. I’d driven my dad’s van that day (thankfully) and came back with it filled to the brim with new goodies.
Then came moving day. I’d never experienced one before, though I’d heard the horror stories. It went okay, though it was long and exhausting. Some of the stuff (like the dining table, TV unit and couch) weren’t being delivered til later, so we made do with what we had until then.
It was a lot of fun, once we got settled. It was amazing to sleep in until 8.30 and still be early for work at 9. Prior, I’d be leaving at 7.30 to get there on time. We saw beautiful sunsets almost every night, and we’d often sit on the porch overlooking the lake and talk.
The best part is, my relationship with my mum improved ten-fold almost overnight. Now that we weren’t constantly suffocating each other and pushing each other’s buttons, things became easier. I got my independence, she got her daughter back. Definitely the thing I’ve done most right in recent years, and I’ve never looked back!