Years ago, when Rudy and I moved into our house, I knew that we had found our home. As far as I was concerned there would never be a need for us to move. Ever. I would imagine us together, raising our children into adulthood. The kids would eventually move on, most likely giving us the title of grandparents. I would envision homemade cookies baking as our kids, with our grandchildren in tow, would gleefully stride into our beloved home, to spend the day with us. Life would be grand, in the most typical way.
Over the years, due to work locations, or simply because why not? Rudy would remark about how great it would be to live elsewhere. But, what about the value of stability? I would respond. He'd answer with his own question, What about experiencing life? Even though we would lightly debate, the subject would be dropped, both of us knowing we weren't actually ever going anywhere.
Yet, one day, recently, I was sitting alone when Rudy's voice popped into my thoughts. What about experiencing life? I heard him say. And that is when I knew, we did not need to keep our wonderfully stable home, forever. Life is too short to live stagnantly. Life should be experienced. And then I booked a flight to visit him in Arkansas.
During my visit, Rudy and I talked about life. Our life. Whenever someone would ask one of us what our plan was, as in How long will Rudy work and live in Arkansas? we never really knew how to answer because there has never really been a concrete response. We have been trying to simply cope with our circumstance, never really talking about what the future held for us. We have just been living in the here and now. And while that is a great way to approach our situation, we also needed to start talking about our retirement years.
That is when the semi-plan was born.
I want to experience life I told him. Rudy was surprised to hear me say I was willing to become unstable. We discussed the seriousness of my comment, and we both agreed that life has so much more to offer than just living a stationary lifestyle.
Our plan begins now, in the sense of financially preparing for what is to come. And yet, at the same time, we also agreed that our home needs to maintain its stability for our children, at least until we help our last child, our youngest son, through high school, and then into college, before we make any permanent changes. Changes like eventually selling our family home, and possibly buying something smaller, just for the two of us. Maybe we will road-trip throughout the United States. Or live in one location until we'd like to move on to another.
What we do know, at the very least, is that we will eventually carve out a new lifestyle that suits our needs.