Anyone who has followed me for any length of time knows that I draw inspiration from the strangest of sources. Today, I can’t stop thinking of Meg Ryan’s tearful rebuttal of Tom Hanks in You Got Mail when he tells her shutting down her bookshop was business. It wasn’t personal.
Maybe it is because that is what people keep telling me when it comes to buying a house.
And I think it's horse crap.
There are few things I can think of more personal than selecting where you are going to live for the rest of your life (or even the next few years). Unless you are buying the house as an investment property, this is the place where you will eat and sleep and cry and laugh. You will invite friends and family over to make memories here. You will invite men (or women) over to make mistakes here.
How do you keep this from getting personal?
Mind you, I’ve got a pretty good check on my emotions (on the outside at least) and so I understand you can’t get attached to every property you look at, and you certainly don’t want to start decorating a place before an offer is accepted on the place. But what about after that? What if you find a place and it is wonderful and you make an offer and they accept the offer and then you start mentally decorating and fantasy shopping and laughing as your brother and sister text message fight over who gets which bedroom next Thanksgiving and then find out that something happened and your offer is no longer accepted?
How do you keep it from getting personal then? How do you not get upset? And then how do you not get more upset because you are mourning the loss of something you never possessed?
More to the point, how do you steel yourself to shrug your shoulders and say it was only a house; there will be others? How do you go out to the next open house with a check in your back pocket ready to do it all again?
I think I was better at buying shoes. I might not be ready to buy a house.