Awake in the Guest Room

Posted on Monday, January 13, 2014 by Tammy in Save Your Marriage | Leave a comment (36)

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In my bed, I lie awake.  

The lights from passing cars dart across the ceiling of the guest room.   The blinds are thin, nearly transparent, and I can see the tops of the trees swaying slightly in the breeze.  

Tomorrow morning I will awake to the room awash with sunlight and the now black leaves will be their fall yellow.  It is never truly winter here.

For now, it is dark and quiet – not quiet, quiet, not quiet – as the cars pass by on our rather busy street.  Sirens wake me some nights.  

It’s funny how two bathrooms and a hallway prevented them from reaching us before – back before we decided to sell this house and the painters came, and we moved about from room to room, finally settling here in this smaller space.

Our room across the hall is ready for someone else.  Someone else will take the first shower in the renovated bathroom.

I like this space.  I even sleep better, but perhaps that is only because it is temporary.

The fact remains that we are moving out, moving on.  Only a week or two remain, perhaps less.*

But I feel at peace here with the trees and the headlights and the shadows on the ceiling.

I pull in a breath as I lie here on my side, looking over the silhouette of my husband’s neck and shoulder and out into the night.  I let it out slowly, but I do not close my eyes.

I don’t want to miss a thing. 


*This was written approximately ten days ago.  We have since moved into our new place.

 And you, Jolly one?  What experiences have you had with seeing things from a different perspective?

36 comments about "Awake in the Guest Room"

  1. Congrats on your new place!
    Vincent Nguyen recently posted..Two Months Later, First Thoughts on the PhilippinesMy Profile

  2. Glad to see you back! Happy New year! I hope your move went well.
    I go into the family room at night with the baby when he wakes up and being in there in the dark is so different than the day- I actually look forward to the different view out the window and the cozy couch.
    Good luck!
    Katie recently posted..What I’m Reading/Read 1.13.14My Profile

    • Katie!! There’s something extra special about the night – peaceful silence, time to reflect. I bet you will treasure those times with the baby for a long time!

      I hope you’re all enjoying your new little guy!

  3. Oh Tammy, what a beautiful and moving piece. It was so well written.

    I can’t wait to hear more about your new place.
    Mark Adam Douglass (Minimalist Couple) recently posted..My 2014 ChallengeMy Profile

    • Mark!! Thank you! It was a moving experience, and I hope my words did it justice. It’s one of those feelings you don’t want to forget.

      I know you and Jess experienced this newness feeling not long ago! I remember your excitement!

    • Add me to the list of people that want details about why you moved, where you moved to, and what the experience has been so far.
      Joel Zaslofsky recently posted..SASM 039 – How to Build Super Systems (and Be Like Batman) with Shanna MannMy Profile

      • Joel!! Great to have you here!

        Short version:
        Where: one bedroom apartment close to our townhome (1/2 the sq. ft.)
        Why: it was the last “big” item to simplify
        Experience so far: smiling so big my face could crack!

        CJ is playing guitar like a madman which lends itself to the lightness I feel! He’s Bringing Bach Back! ;)

        Hope your book is nearing completion – or, if you are like us, the writing of it was the best part! Glad you’re sharing your expertise with the world!

  4. There’s something about basking in the “old” before moving on to the new. Though I was excited about our new house, the old one was more than special – it had been my parent’s house, the only house I had known, having been born two months after they purchased it; it then became my house when my folks split up.

    So many memories were created there but it was time to move on, we had new needs.

    I still sometimes wonder if we should have stayed there and modified it – but in all truth, hubby was not keen in living in a “disaster zone” for a period of time so we made the decision to leave.

    Hope you are enjoying your new digs!
    Dale recently posted..‘Tis the SeasonMy Profile

    • Dale!! I love this line: So many memories were created there but it was time to move on, we had new needs. The last few words really resonate with me. We have new needs.

      Disaster zones are so hard to navigate. At one point, I looked at CJ and said something like, Yes, this is when we need to go to the hotel. And so we did for three nights. It was the best three nights of the renovation!

      Your home looks so beautiful in the videos! Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

      • Absolutely! There are definitely times when one must splurge on a hotel (better than ending up in the land of disagreements, frustration and craziness!)

        Thank you. It was the kitchen that sold me – it will be most difficult to have to give it up one day but that day will come. It’s just too big for us and a bitch to clean – and I HATE cleaning!
        Dale recently posted..‘Tis the SeasonMy Profile

        • Me too, Dale! CJ and I are wondering if we could tackle our new space with a Clean as You Go approach. It may be possible as it is small!

  5. Congratulations on the move and your new adventure!
    Meri recently posted..Thai Chicken Soup RemedyMy Profile

    • Meri!! Thank you! On our first or second day here, we saw a squirrel in the courtyard. That was when we knew everything would be alright. ;)

  6. Looking forward to hearing about your new home!

    • Texas Aggie Mom!! I am beaming, so I hope there will be more stories soon. Thank you for chiming in. Great to have you here!

  7. I have lived in my apartment for 2.5 years and still can’t get used to the light from outside that seeps in at night. I struggled with wanting to see the sun come out in the morning and not wanting to use thicker curtains but am finally giving in and making heavier panels to block the light. I hope you have found a bedroom that suits your needs for sleep in your new home.
    Lois recently posted..Simplicity winnerMy Profile

    • Lois!! Our new place does have some light seeping in from outside. For now, sleep is coming easy.

      I hope the panels work and that, if you want, you can get out and see the sunrise on special days!

  8. Seriously? I got the first one in?

    I remember our last night in our house–we were sleeping on a mattress on the floor! After that, it was into the motor home, at the state park…

    So what kind of new place have you settled into? I know it can’t possibly be as amazing as our apartment in Clear Lake (although, if the truth be told, we’ve already got our next address narrowed down between two marinas ON Clear Lake!). There is definitely something to be said for a temporary dwelling and the freedom that comes with it.
    Bethany @ Journey to Ithaca recently posted..Falling in Love All Over AgainMy Profile

    • Bethany!! We are living in an apartment very close to where our townhouse is, and we love it! Our first two apartments in Houston were lovely. While, perhaps we should have stayed in one of them, we own this ten-year-home-owner experiment. It is part of us. But, like Dale mentioned, it no longer fits our needs. Boy, you guys make so much sense! :)

      Now, your new possible addresses sound very interesting indeed! Love the capital letters (ON Clear Lake!).

      • We did a 10 year experiment as well! We thought we would like doing yard work, and keeping up the house. Nope. It was always a mess, because we were always traveling. And once we got the boat, we would go entire summers without mowing our lawn!

        The best thing about living in an apartment is that you have “people” to do that for you! ;-)

        Yes, living on CL will be interesting. Clear Lake is interesting, because it isn’t. It’s full of silt, which obscures all of the alligators…
        Bethany @ Journey to Ithaca recently posted..Falling in Love All Over AgainMy Profile

  9. Clean as you go…. Could work. In my case, fuggetaboutit! 2 teenagers, 1 dog, 2 cats… place just never seems clean for more than an hour! Every day, I bend down to pick up tumbleweed (thanks to Zeke and his lovely long fur!)
    Dale recently posted..‘Tis the SeasonMy Profile

  10. Congratulations on moving to your new place. That can be a big change. I hope you’re settling in great.
    Steve recently posted..The 4 Choices that Will Profoundly Affect the Outcome of Your LifeMy Profile

  11. Oh how I missed you two!!! I’m so glad you’re back with stories to entertain, educate, motivate and enlighten. I’m so glad you like your new location and I hope the move “moves” you closer to the ultimate life you desire.

    One thing I think I know for sure, you two will be “at home” as long as you are together.

    Ree Klein recently posted..How Do You Teach Your Children About Money?My Profile

    • Ree!! You are so thoughtful! We think of ourselves as goofy nerds who occasionally make a logical statement, so we sure do appreciate your kind words.

      We are downright giddy these days. Now that we have less space and less stuff, it feels lighter. What? Two fewer toilets to clean?! Permanent vacation!

      Hope your day is fun in the sun! So good to hear from you!

  12. I remember moving out of a flat I shared with a bunch of crazy people in 2009. I was the last one to leave as I couldn’t be bothered to pack up. But eventually the day came to leave, but before I left, I walked into the living room and sat down in absolute silence. An empty flat with two couches. It was eerie – even though I didn’t enjoy living there, it gave me a sense of sadness to think that this would be the last time I would be inside these 4 walls.

    I thought back to the very first day and the promise of good times and fun – yet it didn’t turn out the way I had hoped, yet, I felt calm and at ease.

    Sometimes things don’t work out and we have to move on, but it’s good to take a moment and embrace that feeling.
    jamie flexman recently posted..Analysis Paralysis – Why I Need To Re-evaluate My Life (and why I need your help)My Profile

    • Jamie!! Wow, you described that scene so well I can see you in it. It sounds like your reflection really helped bring you a sense of peace about the situation. There are some experiences I’ve had where I wish I’d taken the time to reflect. Some of those experiences took me months or years to move past, whereas taking the time right then might have done the trick!

      Thank you for sharing this time!

  13. what a lovely transition from the old to the new…oh…and welcome back :)

    I know you are now both content and happy to put that last piece of the simplicity puzzle in its proper place. I am very happy for both of you!!

    Maybe one day you’ll share with us Jolly Hoombah readers a few pics of your new pad? That would be hoombahlicious :)

    “CJ is playing guitar like a madman which lends itself to the lightness I feel! He’s Bringing Bach Back!” – Turns out, Bach never leaves, he just lurks around in musty places until the time is right to say “hello”!

    Take care you two and enjoy your new digs. My best to you both.

    lyle @ The Joy of Simple recently posted..My Five Simple And Frugal Tips To Save Cash In 2014 And BeyondMy Profile

    • Lyle!! Spoken like a true musician! ;) Bach is the ultimate madman. I am no classical musician expert by any means, but I am finally noticing that his compositions are truly superior. But Eddie Van Halen and the like have nothing to worry about, I’m still an 80s rock girl at heart!

      We are just following in your humble footsteps, Lyle. You got the simplicity thing long ago and we were still buying Pier 1 vases!

      I hope you’re gearing up for a fine weekend. Always great to hear your thoughts!

  14. Tammy, this is so pretty and poetic! I’ve had similar feelings when moving out of previous apartments and our previous house. I don’t love moving (yikes, what an understatement!) and I hope to do it as little as possible in the future, but there is something bittersweet and lovely about the transition from one place to the next.

    I wish the two of you the very best in your new place!
    Joy @ Joyfully Green recently posted..Joyful Reads for the Weekend, Vol. 10My Profile

    • Joy!! That just may be the perfect word to describe it – bittersweet. Just like Jamie mentioned here, even a place you didn’t love can evoke many emotions as you leave.

      After seeing those beautiful animals in your backyard (I want to gobble that fox!), I would say your current home would be very hard to leave. Wherever you go you can find beauty though, and we are living proof. Houston is ugly by most standards, but there is beauty if you care to see it – squirrels, coffee shops, the big, blue sky, people.

      Happy weekend!

  15. Congrats on your new home both of you. How are you settling in? Wishing you lots of happiness and good memories in your new place.
    Hayley @ A Disease Called Debt recently posted..The emotional stages of debt: FearMy Profile

    • Hayley!! Many thanks. We are loving every single minute of it, literally. I’ve been very happy for several years, but we’ve just kicked it up a notch. When we moved in, they said the utilities might be $80. We are excited to prove them wrong because they don’t know we don’t have a TV and use fans to cool and love natural light. Heck, our townhome which was double the size didn’t cost us over $100 most months (once we changed a few things!), so this wee, little space should be much less. We are up for the challenge!

      I hope you’re enjoying the new year!

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