Life can have a weird way of working itself out. I’m reminded of this very lesson in my current life as I go through the tumultuous process of selling my house.
It would seem to the outside observer, everything that could go wrong so far, has.
Initially we listed without an agent, after three months with only five showings we threw in the towel and decided to ante up and re list with a realtor in the spring.
This ended up working in our favour as over the spring our dead market thawed a bit and we were pummelled with showings right out the gate.
We were quickly easing our way towards a sale (I could feel it) when one night as I was vacuuming my basement to prepare for a viewing, I stepped in something wet and smelly. It turns out we had a sewage back up. We had to cancel all upcoming showings and put our listing on hold. At the time I thought, this is the worst possible thing that could happen, but then I got the insurance cheque.
Let’s just say everything was well taken care of, including a fluffy new basement carpet and a good chunk leftover because we did a lot of the work ourselves. Disaster averted.
And then, a week later we got an offer. After a few shenanigans (including some insulting low balls and writing a bunch of our personal possessions into the offer) we were able to agree on a price. It was less than I had hoped but something I could live with, and it was an offer!
I was sure things were looking up, until I awoke one morning shivering and could almost see my breath hanging in the air. Our furnace had died during an unusual cold patch.
I could hardly believe our luck.
Again, we got an insurance cheque and my husbands friend was able to install a high efficiency furnace that he had refurbished for a fraction of what it would normally cost. He told us our old furnace would have never passed inspection and I realised, this had all once again been a blessing in disguise.
As our closing day approached, we went house hunting and found an adorable place across from a park on a huge lot. I paid the deposit and spent a few glorious days visualising how it would look with our updates and furniture. I had a place worked out for my studio, and big plans for the backyard, and then we got the call. Our buyers financing had fallen through, and they had waited until the very last moment to tell us.
Now here we are again, showing our house almost daily and waiting for the silver lining in all this to reveal itself (as I’m sure it eventually will).
When things seem to be going awry, I’m reminded of a Chinese parable that was told to me as a little girl and has stuck with me throughout my life.
To paraphrase: A poor famer diligently saves money to purchase a fine horse, but soon after the purchase, the horse runs away. A neighbour offers his condolences saying, ‘sorry to hear about your horse, that is some bad luck,’ to which the farmer replies, ‘bad luck good luck, who can say?’
The neighbour thinks the man is crazy, of course the loss of an expensive horse could be nothing but bad luck, but he is given pause when days later, the farmers horse returns and has brought another fine horse with it.
So, the farmer gives the second horse to his son, but his son is thrown from the horse and badly breaks his leg.
‘Sorry about your sons bad luck’ says the concerned neighbour again upon hearing of the accident, but the farmer calmly replies, ‘bad luck good luck, who can say?’
A week later the emperor comes to the village and takes every able-bodied young man to fight in a gruesome war, because of the broken leg, the farmers son is spared.
The parable goes on but I digress, sometimes things don’t work out, and for good reason. That failed relationship that left you feeling like your heart had been stomped by stilettos may have needed to end to open the door for your soulmate. That job you lost (and hated) finally freed you up to find the career of your dreams.
There are stories of people who have missed flights that have later crashed. I even remember hearing about a woman who worked at the world trade centre sleeping through her alarm for the first time ever on the morning of 9/11.
In my own life, learning of my first pregnancy as a broke, unmarried, 23 year old seemed like a full blown disaster. When those two lines appeared on a pregnancy test a second time, with a barely three month old baby, I basically considered my life to be over. Now at 33 with two amazing sons and a PCOS diagnosis I am so very thankful for both of those successful pregnancies and never does a day pass when I take them for granted.
My entire autoimmune diagnosis has actually ended up transforming my life in so many ways and I am actually healthier in my body and mind than I ever was pre-diagnosis.
Whatever you may be going through at the moment, give it time. It’s hard to see the whole picture when you’re standing in it, but at some point in the future it will all make sense.
Sometimes life hands us lemons, and have you guys seen the prices of lemons lately?
(Have you ever had a tumultuous house selling experience that worked out in the end? Tell me!)