I recently moved to the other side of the world to be with my new partner who interestingly, actually came from the same area I’d been living in for 30 years in the UK! Our courting was based on a few brief meetings at events in Australia, and continued on Skype for a year. Since then we’ve been physically together six months and have recently bought a house together.
Choosing a house was tricky at first because we didn’t know exactly what money we had until I transferred what I had from the UK, but once that was done we knew the maximum we could afford and we looked at houses up to that price. The trouble was everything we looked at had something missing according to our personal tick box, and the ‘perfect’ houses always seemed to be just above what we could afford.
We then expanded our ideas to see if we could share with another couple, but no one came forward within the timescale we set ourselves, so we looked at possible finance. That was a challenge because we are both in our late 60s and we didn’t want to commit ourselves to a debt for the rest of our lives.
The whole business of looking, making offers and waiting for results was making me feel very ill and tired, and I realised that we were making it a very mental process. I already knew that the best decisions are ones I make with my body, in other words, when I pay attention to what is crystal clear in terms of what I feel. So we decided to go with our feelings and let go of the tick list.
Eventually we relaxed and started having more fun – we enjoyed meeting with the estate agents on the open days and building our relationships with them, so they gradually got to know our requirements and would email us details of houses they thought might suit. Basing my decision on feelings not thoughts, I found that I could walk into a house and go “Nup.” Nothing to consider, just a feeling in my body that it wasn’t the house for us, so we could let it go and not waste time and energy on the what ifs. I knew our perfect house was ‘out there’ somewhere and that I would recognise it as soon as I saw it.
There was in fact one house that felt absolutely gorgeous and my body relaxed as soon as we walked in, but it felt cold, and I’d been struggling with the cold Australian winter with no central heating. The advantage was that it was well within our budget and would leave us some spare cash for other things, but it was in an area that many people recommended we avoid, although several of our friends already own houses there. We expressed interest but left it at that, not making any definite commitment.
Despite that, it came back to us time and time again, and even though we looked at lots of other options, this was the one house that felt good right from the start. Alcohol consumption and drug addiction were reported as being an issue in the area, but my house in the UK had similar issues with the flats opposite and I never personally had a problem, apart from occasional noise at night. There were many pluses to this house – a beautiful deck, spectacular views of sunsets, and it even had a veggie garden ready to plant and citrus trees, which looked promising.
So we bought it and it’s been lovely living here – I’ve been discovering plants in the garden that I only ever saw in office plant pots in the UK; we’ve had a few trees trimmed to let in more light and the house has felt warmer as a result. It feels like we are right in the middle of a very real family community and when it’s quiet, the birdsong is a delight. Sitting on the deck each evening enjoying the sunset has been an absolute blessing.
The longer I stay there the more I appreciate what we have, and the trust in my body that constellated everything making it possible for us to live there.
Published with permission of my partner.
By Carmel Reid, Age 67, BEng, DMS, CertEd, MCMI, Personal Development Coach/Counsellor and International Presenter