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Do You Make Major Decisions Based On The Best Interest of Your Children?

Posted by on May. 9, 2012 at 10:56 AM
  • 9 Replies

City Living Is Great, But Not for My Baby Boy

Posted by The Stir Bloggers

Jordan Reid of Ramshackle Glam is one of those bloggers who would make you so full of hate jealous if only she weren't so impossibly cool and funny. She is glamorous and sweet and humble enough to somehow make it all work -- darn her!

We love her (can't you tell?) and we think you will, too. Here is her Mother's Day contribution below:

I couldn't sleep last night.

We’re making an offer on a second house (the one with lots of space that’s a bit of a blank slate, design-wise), and while I doubt the owners are going to come down enough to allow us to get it, they might ... and I am definitely more than a little nervous. It is such a big deal. And I’m scared.

The fact is, of course, that this isn’t a decision that we’ve made quickly, or that we haven’t thought through: we’ve been circling the idea of moving to the Hudson Valley since last winter, and have spent the past year saving up and looking at places. And we are both certain that a move is what we want, both on an emotional level and a logical one: the truth is that we’re just not reaping any of the benefits of living in Manhattan these days, and city living is getting in the way of our life more than it’s enhancing it.

Plus, since we’d have to move to someplace more child-friendly (with, say, a bedroom door, and maybe an elevator so I don’t feel so trapped) within a year, we’d be talking about rent prices that are at least equal to, if not more than, the kinds of mortgages we’re looking at. And finally, I’ve lived in the suburbs before -- in LA -- and the way of life was much more to my liking: on a Saturday, I’d rather have friends over to BBQ and hang out at home than do ... well, anything. The things that we like to do best these days are just not the kinds of things that are worth paying to live in the city for.

Most of all, though, the reason we want to move is that city life is not what we want for our son. I grew up here, and I had a great childhood, but I want something different for him. I want him to have a yard to run around in with Lucy and Virgil. I want him to go fishing on Saturdays with his Dad not because it’s a big, special production involving car rentals and long drives, but rather because that’s just what they feel like doing. I want to pick up our pumpkin in a patch, not in a grocery store. I want him to have a swing set of his very own.

But it’s an enormous change for us, and I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t scary.

I’m scared that I won’t make any friends, or that I won’t make friends that are the kinds of friends that I have in my life now (which is to say, real friends rather than friends of convenience). I’m scared that Kendrick and I will fight about stupid things like home repairs and mowing the lawn. I’m scared that we’ll move in and suddenly realize that we picked the wrong place, and that we would have been happier if we had moved just one town over or to another state altogether. And you know something else I’m scared of? I’m scared that one day, a few years from now, my husband will wake up and look at me and at the life that we’ve built and think, Is that it? Is that all I get? I’m scared that he’ll think that. I’m scared that I’ll think that.

Because these towns, you know, they’re so quiet. They don’t have all those bright city lights to distract you from what’s right there in front of you. And what if, when all the lights go down, it’s not enough?

Kendrick has a friend who once said that New York City takes all the basic facets of normal human existence away from you, and then sells them back to you one at a time as luxuries. Want a bathroom that fits more than one person at a time? That’ll cost ya. A bedroom door? Five hundred extra per month. Don’t even ask about closets; you don’t get those unless you work on Wall Street.

And the thing about all this struggle -- because living in the city is a struggle; it can be such a great ride, but it’s certainly not easy -- is that it keeps you dreaming that things will change. One day, you say to yourself, I’ll move to Italy and have a yard full of lemon trees. Or maybe I’ll buy a place in California, right on the ocean. Or maybe I’ll find a gorgeous townhouse in the far reaches of Brooklyn. All you know is that where you are right then isn’t where you’ll likely stay, and there’s something very freeing in that knowledge. You don’t know where you’ll be, but you know it won’t be where you are.

Like many others I know of my generation, I was raised by parents who encouraged me to think that I had all the choices in the world, and all the time in the world to make them. We spent years being told that we could do anything, be anything -- even our liberal arts curriculums let us play around in various fields for years before choosing a major, if we ever had to at all.

And that’s great. It is, it’s a wonderful thing -- a privilege -- to feel that you can do anything ... but it also makes it really hard to finally choose what you want to do. Why should I marry this amazing guy when I’ve never even been to Asia yet? My even-more-perfect man might be waiting there for me. Why should I accept this pretty cool job offer when I haven’t even tested the waters in these five other career paths? I might like something else better. Why should I move to this one town, when there are so many other places in the world that might make the perfect home?

So I’ve found it very hard to make this leap. Because this enormous step -- buying a house -- is an incredible thing, an incredible opportunity ... but it also shuts down so many other possibilities. We won’t be moving to Italy anytime soon. And of course we were never going to -- of course we weren’t -- but it was nice to think that maybe, just maybe, we might. We could. And if we make this decision ... well, we can’t. Not for awhile, anyway.

But sometimes you need to just put on your Grownup Pants and decide, already. Weigh the pros and cons, figure out what’s important to you, argue with yourself to pieces ... but then do it. Jump.

I have to say, though -- I don’t know that I would have had the courage to make that jump a year ago. But now it’s not about us anymore, not really: it’s about a little man who smiles so much when he looks out our New York City window, even when there’s nothing to see outside but the apartment building across the way, that all we want to do is set him free to study the sky. And when we take that into account ...

Well ...

It’s not really a decision at all.

It’s just what we’re going to do.

Did you ever make a decision like this?

Do you make major decisions with the best interest of your childlren in mind?

by on May. 9, 2012 at 10:56 AM
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Replies (1-9):
natesmom1228
by on May. 9, 2012 at 11:00 AM

For the most part yes. It really depends on the situation.

mommynac
by on May. 9, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Of course. My parents did it for me. It's part of being a good parent. I see it as a privilege, not a sacrifice.

RelaxedMom2-3
by on May. 9, 2012 at 11:07 AM

Most of the time. The house we bought was based on there interest. It is in the suburbs and on a dead end culdesac, not much traffic. But the house is smaller than our old one. They love the outside though, so it wasn't a very hard decision.

BonitaM
by Bronze Member on May. 9, 2012 at 11:15 AM

Yes, every decision we make is with DD's best interest in mind.  Not only is it made with her best interest but we also include her in every decision we make.....we want to hear what she thinks and feels about the subject.  Just today DH said let's save up the next two paycheques and run away.....forget all our problem and start over.  If we didn't have DD I'd say yes in a heartbeat and start packing but she goes to a really good school here, she has friends here, she's close to my family and she'd miss them.  We're stuck here whether we like it or not because it's what's best for DD.

 

arthistmom
by Bronze Member on May. 9, 2012 at 12:32 PM
Depends on the decision to be made.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
Lydlou02
by Bronze Member on May. 9, 2012 at 12:44 PM
Wow. That makes me glad to live in the Midwest where city and yard aren't mutually exclusive. Where even the apartment buildings have courtyards some with playgrounds too.
This school district has made me really reluctance to move. I dont think I'll find a better autism program anywhere. So for my DD I've made the decision to stay. Even though we coukd go just about anywhere with DH's job.
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Barabell
by Barbara on May. 9, 2012 at 12:55 PM

I agree. I live in the inner city, and yet it's family friendly. We have several places to fish within just a five mile radius of our house. We have a yard, and we live right next to playgrounds and parks within walking distance. Yet, I'm close to everything that major metro areas provide without the drive from the suburbs.

Quoting Lydlou02:

Wow. That makes me glad to live in the Midwest where city and yard aren't mutually exclusive. Where even the apartment buildings have courtyards some with playgrounds too.
This school district has made me really reluctance to move. I dont think I'll find a better autism program anywhere. So for my DD I've made the decision to stay. Even though we coukd go just about anywhere with DH's job.


CrazedMomof2
by on May. 9, 2012 at 1:36 PM

 I wish we lived in a more city like area! We can not walk to "town" from our house. We have to travel over an hour for a mall. It has its advantages but it also has its disadvantages. Being surrounded on 3 sides of our county with National Forests is beautiful!

CrazedMomof2
by on May. 9, 2012 at 1:36 PM

 And yes, we try to make decisions based on what is best for our children!

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