I was not sure how to title this post (the original title was “My brain is spinning out of control” just in case you were wondering).
My creative juices are flowing and I am desperate to start work on our house. I am not a materialistic person, but I do find myself fantasising about winning a sum of money a lot lately. I know this sounds very shallow, and I feel bad for even typing this.
The thing is my family and I have faced many struggles over the years. One of the main struggles we have faced is homelessness.
This is a very difficult post for me to write as it has effected my whole family unit immensely.
It all started the year my mum passed away.
We had been living in a rented new build first-floor flat (apartment) for six years. I loved it, it was our first ever family home together. We moved into it when my eldest child was six months old. We had problem neighbours and it made life for us some what difficult. We had many neighbours come and go from the flat below us. They would complain about our noise levels, even though after various sound tests were carried out, we were found to not be a concerning matter or a nuisance as our neighbours made us out to be. Its frustrating that after making these complaints against us, they would move on to new properties yet we remained. This was something that my partner found very infuriating as people were tarnishing our reputation to benefit themselves.
While working at a local supermarket my partner befriended two men, who were already friends. My partner would confide in these friends about our problems.
One of the men ended up being made redundant from their job and moved down south to be with his parents. He left behind an empty two bedroomed house, that he was still paying for.
The other man and his wife came up with the idea that we could leave behind our flat and rent the empty house from the man who moved away. For many months they tried to convince us it was a great idea. Before my mum passed away, I refused as it was too far out for her to be able to visit us. So of course once they knew my mum had passed away, they brought the idea up again to my partner. By this point he had had enough of the problem neighbours and was wanting us to move on from the flat into a house.
Now I do not want to make out that my fella was the bad guy in all of this as he really was not. We discussed our options and viewed the house. By the time my mums funeral came around we had agreed to make the move into this house, even though by the the time the move date came around, we were both having doubts, but felt it was too late to back out, this was due to our own naivety and my gut instincts were clouded by depression.
It was not until after we had moved into this house that we had reaslied we had made a devastatingly huge mistake.
The house had not been decorated for awhile so we decided to update the decor to a more plain colour palette then what was originally there. It originally was very dark and dingy. During the process of updating the decor, it came to light that the house was not as structurally sound as we were first led to believe. Now we had never private rented before and had no clue of how things worked as we had only ever rented from a local authority before this house. We were unfortunately very naive.
We raised our concerns with our landlord who did nothing. It got to the point where we had had enough and was advised to contact our local authority to get the house assessed. They came out to do this and found numerous of problems. They had an electrician come out and he found the electrics to be dangerous and informed us the house needed to be condemned.
This led us to be rehoused in another local private rented house. We thought it would be perfect as it was a three bedroom house with a small garden. This again turned out to be an issue as on Christmas Day of 2017 we had a leak from the roof in my children’s bedrooms. The walls were saturated. There was a hole in my sons bedroom wall where the water was coming in and cascading down the wall towards an electrical outlet. While these problems actually got sorted in the end, by this point we had decided to leave. The rent was far too high for the area and it got to the point where we just could not afford to live and pay all of our household bills.
As they were aware of everything we had been through, my partners parents suggested that we should move in with them for a year or so. The plan was for us to work towards paying off our debts as well as saving for a fresh start.
We was only in his parents home for five months before they decided to kick us out on the 10th August 2018. My partner was devastated. My children were broken. My family was falling apart around me and their was nothing I could do.
We spent three months living in and out of various travelodge’s and sleeping on my sisters living room floor. We went to the council for help, they paid for our temporary accommodation, but would not rehouse us. They had decided that we had done this to ourselves intentionally. I had finally broken. My family were in pieces.
During this time we had so much support and help from my sisters and my aunties. My partner, however had no support from his siblings or extended family at all. Not once did they ask if he was ok or if they could help him out with anything.
Take from this what you wish, weather you think it all was intentional, or not. You are free to have your own opinion. I for one would never wish what we have been through on anybody.
The only good that has come out of this is that as a whole my family is now so much stronger since we have found our new home. That and the fact I am now able to see the true beauty in the things around us, weather it be a beautiful sunset or a robin perching on our fence. It’s made not only myself, but my family value what we really class as the important things in life, such as a roof over our head and food on the table. Also the fact that we do not need to spend money in order to enjoy time together. Most importantly it has been a journey to find out who really cares. Without my extended family and my best friend, I do not know where my family and I would of ended up. For them I am eternally grateful.
All of this is why I am so excited to make our house a loving home. I want to dress it up and show it some love, believe me it needs it. The process is going to be very slow and drawn out as we do not have a lot of money to be able to do everything at once. My family is a one income family, I may be a student, but my current learning level does not allow for many loans or grants to help with the cost of living. Once I am at university, while we will not be loaded, we will be better off to some degree. So please do not be put off by the slow process of what’s to come. It will be worth it.