When I said I wanted a Tiny House I knew that there would be many struggles. I knew that this would be a learning experience, especially since I’m currently in the process that requires A LOT of prep work that is less than glamorous.
The room that I grew up in is currently the same bedroom I’m still living in. It’s roughly 9×9 which makes it almost 81 square feet. 81sq that I shared with my sister for 20 years. Please note that we never had a door and there was a trundle bed smack dab in the middle of it, PLUS Tristan’s gigantic dresser.
4 years later the 81 sq is all mine. I’ve upgraded to a fleece throw covered in owl print that’s held up by nails to convey a little bit of privacy, and I finally came to my senses and built an horizontal ladder to hang my clothes up and take advantage of my space efficiently.
Looking back over my life, I would never trade those 20 years of sharing a room with my sister for anything. God definitely blessed me when it came to her and by God’s grace we learned to love each other deeply and not have resentment for always being in each others face. And it is true what they say when people talk about “Big Love blooms in Tiny Spaces”. To this day I miss her being right by my side all of the time. I miss annoying her too. I used to wake her up just to ask her the most stupid questions I could think of. This was back before I had a smart phone with a Google App and Tristan has always been the best Trivia player I’ve ever known. I trusted everything she said about everything. Her word was gold.
Once I hit her with a pillow at 3am and whispered “Tristan…. Tristan…. Are you awake? What would happen if someone ate deodorant?!” I can’t remember her response now… But I know it was something hateful.
Anyways. My room has went through many drastic changes. The week after she got married was probably one of the hardest weeks of my life. I was literally alone for the first time. I had no close friends. I didn’t have a job. I was only going to Jasper 4 times a week to go to school to learn how to weld. Everyone in my classes was a man and most of them were significantly older than me. I had absolutely nothing in common with any of them. We all got along very fine because my background with my family’s band has always been being around people I barely know, but it was tough being the only female.
Being alone is nice, but it’s never been my most favorite thing. I love being around people. I love being around fellow women that I can be friends with and learn from. I love being in the action. I love adventure. So when Tristan said “I do.” and then was gone, I had to learn how to entertain myself and be kind of like the only child because I was the only one living at home. I never realized that day would come, until it did… And it was tough.
So after I spent a couple of days feeling sorry for myself and my new way of living, I found Daddy working outside and I asked, “Daddy! Can I use one of your razor blades??” He gave me a curious look and said, “What for?” I looked at him matter-of-factly and said, “I want to rip all that awful matted up shag carpet outta my room.” He handed me a blade and then told me that a carpet cutter would be better for me. I told him that I didn’t have one and that I had no idea what one looked like or where to get it, so I went on my way fully expecting to tough it out and do this by myself. I’ve always had a very headstrong personality and once my mind is made up.. That is it.
10 minutes later Daddy handed me a carpet cutter, that he went out of his way to buy at Home Depot, and said “Don’t cut yourself. Good luck.” Once I started ripping up the carpet I had no idea what kind of floor I would be getting underneath it, but I knew anything had to be better than that nasty 20 year old matted up ugly mess. It just made me sad to look at it. I think Mama knew this. I think she in all her wisdom and understanding knew that I couldn’t handle this change without making a change of my own and that I needed support. So she joined in on the shredding.
Underneath the carpet though, Daddy had laid down ply wood that he had forgotten about and it actually looked really cool. Then I got rid of my pitifully broken twin bed held up by prayers and JUST the second half of the trundle bed that I had kept and was sleeping on. I immediately felt like a dark cloud was lifted! It was finally becoming more of my space and less of what was “Mine and Tristan’s room.”
Well 4 years later of modifications and collecting clothing from small purchases and hand-me-downs(which are my favorite) my room has gotten completely out of control. If you’re not careful you will literally accumulate everything over time and then have no place to put it. And you forget what you have so you never use it. I honestly don’t understand how this 81sq holds all my junk, me, AND my 90lb dog. All of this purging and down-sizing has been weighing heavily on my mind as I have been preparing for this Tiny House business. Sure the square footage will be bigger there, BUT you’re also trying to fit roughly 4 rooms into one space. Talk about throwing yourself into some anxiety.
So today’s mission was tackling my clothes issue. Daddy earlier had asked me if I could do something for him and I told him I would once I got done sorting my clothes. 15 minutes into my project I knew I had bit off more than I could chew. I HAD CLOTHES EVERYWHERE. My bedroom and my living room were completely destroyed. I was completely freaking out. “WHERE AM I GOING TO PUT EVERYTHING?!” and “HOW IN THE WORLD AM I SUPPOSED TO DO THIS?!” were the two main thoughts screaming in my head. I had to call my friend, Susanna, and spend 10 minutes praying just to get calmed down.
Please note: IT TOOK ME SIX HOURS AND FIVE FULL GARBAGE BAGS LATER TO FINISH. SIX. HOURS.
I felt like it’s shameful and ungodly the amount of clothes I had. Especially when I noticed the fact that I didn’t wear over half of them. They were just sitting there. So many people need clothes. The perfectly good clothes that I have. So many families would be blessed in having the money to save by having my hand-me-downs. Just like I am when someone gives me theirs. Jesus has blessed my life so much and I wasn’t sharing those blessings. That was a wrong that I had to make right.
Now that the clothing is no longer overwhelming every area of my life, I feel so relieved. And I understand that I will need to go through another round of purging my clothing before the big move-in, but I’m so glad I went ahead and started.
I know this post has been me mostly talking about the current room I’m living in and less about my future tiny house, but I feel like this is an important step in this journey. You have to understand the space you’re currently in to be able to know how to get to/understand the space you are pursuing to be in. Plus I didn’t realize just how big of a deal this part would be to me. It’s becoming more real and a bit more overwhelming, but a lesson that I’ve been learning has be validated once again by this step in the experience –good long-lasting things don’t happen overnight. It takes time and hard work.
If you don’t start today, you’ll never be there tomorrow.
Thanks for reading!