Friday, July 13, 2007

Buying a House and Doing the Triathlon Thing: Hard Things are Fun

You know how you always plan on doing something but you never do it? I've been that way my whole life. I've been planning on going back to college to get a doctorate. I've been planning on finding a teaching job and getting my teaching license. I've been planning on becoming a big adventurer.

I'm finally doing two things that I've been planning on doing for a while. We're buying a house and I'm getting ready for my first triathlon. I know! I know! It's amazing that I'm actually doing something.

For some time now I've been using the excuse that I'm still settling after getting married and moving twice, and yeah, that's why I haven't been getting things done. It's been over two years since I got married and we've been in Nashville for nearly a year and a half. I'm not sure how long it takes to get used to big changes, but I've always been a late bloomer (my favorite book, as a child, was Leo the Late Bloomer. I'm not kidding. I had my mom read it to me over and over again. It was very short).

I have no evidence to back this up, but I think big changes are harder to adapt to the older a person gets. That's been true for me, at least. I think it's because you get more familiar with how shitty life is. Even if you're a very positive person, you have to admit that life is quite crappy. Yes, you DO have to look on the bright side. It's very hard not to ogle the dark side of things.

Anyway, I finally took the bull by the horns and said, basically, to hell with convention* and not having the best gear and not having an easy place to swim, I'm going to be a damn triathlete. A sexy triathlete. I don't know if triathletes are typically considered sexy, but I think fitness is good looking. Fitness and living healthy are the bright side of things. The dark side is not being healthy when you could be healthy. Like when you choose to drink and smoke and live a depressing, harsh life as though you have something to prove about your misery.

That's just my opinion and I've been there before. And in most things I'm not very good at being middle of the road. So if I'm not trying to be healthy, I'm sliding towards the dark side of things. That's the way it works for me and I guess you could call that human nature.

So on Wednesday I found a place to swim. It's kind of a long drive and it's going to cost money, but it's a great program. I found it through the Googles (as the cool kids are saying these days). They swim two to three times a week and there are two coaches. On Wednesday I nearly drowned a few times because I'm so unfit for the pool. I've been running and riding a lot, so I'm pretty good there. Surprisingly enough, running and riding strength don't translate much into swimming strength. I guess that's the beauty of the triathlon.

But it worked out great. The coach already gave me some tips that improved my stroke immensely. The thing for me is always getting my chin out of the water enough to not drown. And you know how it is, when you're worried you're not breathing well and you're running out of breath, the panic makes you breathe harder and instead of focusing on swimming well, you're struggling to calm yourself down and all that.

When I got out of the pool at the end of the session, I could barely lift myself up onto the pool edge. I was so worn out. But it felt awesome.

Buying a house is a different story. It feels great too, but it also feels stressful. A couple of times both Stoker and I were about to snap. I don't know what that means, really. Not that we were both about to go berserk, but that we were about to say, "Hell no. Let's not buy a house." The two of us know that it will be a good thing. All the stuff leading up to the closing is just a gauntlet, to see if you really really want to buy a house.

It's a very hard thing to do. What kills me is that there are all these people who have done it. And there are people who do it at the same time as breaking the law, like with stolen social security numbers and stuff (that's what I've heard, anyway). How the hell do they get through that? They must have no soul.

*I'm not sure what convention is in this case.


Jodi said...

you know, that's how i feel about immigration... all the stuff they are putting us through is to make sure I REALLY WANT to live in Canada. There is no other explanation. Except maybe national security or something. But do they really need to know what Wil's been doing every second of his life since he was 18, as well?

Dani said...

Way to go Niks. Send me some pics of the place you are buying!

Jodie K said...

Way to go, Action Jackson! I tend to procrastinate as well. Hell, I just made the call to get me car into the shop to bang out a few bumps left over from our blizzardly winter.

The house, you may hate it and doubt it at first. I actually stood in my empty apartment and cried, thinking I just made the biggest mistake. You will learn how to fix a toilet, the tax write off is fab and you save loads of cash in the long run. I bought my townhouse - wow - seven years ago and sooooo look forward to buying up to a groovy, proper house once the market gets back on track and/or me boss comes to his senses and gives me a proper raise. Even doing it the second times scares me!

Aries327 said...

Jodi -- They should just have a box you can check for that. "What have you been doing since you were 18?" A) Making homemade anti-aircraft missiles; B)Manufacturing meth in my basement; C) Nothing illegal, why do you ask?

Something like that. It would be much easier. I would check "C," myself.

Dani -- Done.

Jodie K -- I have a big list of things I still need to do. Maybe I should worry when I run out of things I'm planning on doing?

We hope to be in this townhouse for a few years. Then when we move back out west (fingers crossed), we'll sell it and have a little bit of money for a down payment on a new place.

I think it will be cool to own property. I've always just borrowed. Thanks for the comment.