We are not that couple

When we first moved into this house, our days were filled with constant discussion of all the changes we were envisioning. We walked through each room and commented on what colors we would paint, where we would replace carpet with hardwood, if they would become offices or bedrooms, etc. After a few months of living through the hard work and stress that such transformations take, those discussions have tapered off. I’ve realized that the only way we’re making it out of this intact is to focus on one project at a time. Now we don’t mention installing blinds unless the sun is actually in our eyes. Anything that isn’t an immediate concern is tuned out completely.

I had envisioned myself posting lots of cute tutorials on home improvement, documenting all the work that Chase and I were putting into the house and sharing our knowledge. You know, like this couple. I have learned that there are some people that can take on home improvement projects and make them seem easy, even fun. We are not that couple. The truth is that we daily feel like we’re just keeping our heads above water, and the thought of trying to take artful photos seems completely out of reach, as does writing an intelligent post on our thought process. After a week of stress and arguments, the last thing I want to do is re-live how many Youtube videos and conflicting opinions we consulted on how to stain our concrete floor before I finally just told Chase that I would do whatever he felt was best and tried to take my hands off it.

Remodeling has created a cyclical pattern in our relationship. We begin by looking ahead to the next project and excitedly talk about how great it will look. We are naively optimistic on the amount of work and money our vision will require. When it comes time to make choices we begin to bicker and try to force the final decision on each other since neither of us wants to be the one taking blame if something goes wrong, or if our money is wasted. It’s exhausting, not just physically but emotionally.

At some point…we hit a breakthrough. Whether it’s because things actually start to work out the way we hoped, or because we finally accept that it doesn’t matter whether or not that paint color is the exact shade we envisioned, there is always a moment of relief when we let out the breath we realize we’ve been holding the entire time. And we remember that together we’re building a home, our home, a forever place, and it really is going to be amazing.

Thanks for reading. xoxo

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5 Thoughts on “We are not that couple

  1. We just moved to a new apartment, and although we probably don’t have as many projects to tackle, we are doing the exact same thing! Working one room at a time with whatever money we have. It works great! And it’s so nice to hear you’re doing the same thing :)

  2. This is a beautiful, real post, and I thank you for it. As much as I want my future life with my boyfriend to be straight out of a magazine, I know that the home renovation/decoration decisions we make after I move in are going to become a messy process. A beautiful, messy process, not worth sharing on a blog, but worth remembering. We’re going to argue over little things, we’re going to laugh, and we’re going to get SUPER frustrated with each other. And then we’ll probably laugh some more. He and I are a team, but we’re not THAT team. :)

  3. Stacey on June 10, 2013 at said:

    I totally feel your pain. My husband and I *humblebrag* (but mostly him) built our entire home from the ground up. It was the most daunting task ever. I remember being in the midst of it all and wanting to wash my hands of the entire thing so many times, but it was finally finished and I love it. It’s amazing to show people our house and watch them marvel when I confirm “Yep, Daren built this beauty all by himself.” Remodels are never easy (and never fun unless you’re a psycho), but it will all be worth it. Your last paragraph was beautiful and says it all.

    • Caroline on June 10, 2013 at said:

      Oh my – I can’t even fathom building a house like that! Thanks for the comment, congrats on making it through such an adventure ;)

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