What I found after losing my husband, home & dream for my kids

  • Share this:

When I was 3, my parents divorced. My mom packed us up and moved us from place to place. I was the kid who moved around all the time and attended five different elementary schools.

I knew what it was like being the new kid on the block.

It was a pattern I did not want to repeat with my children. I planned to raise them in a “forever” house. The forever house was a beautiful concept to me.

We all know someone who spent their whole life in one house. Either their parents still live there, or they bought it from their parents.

And it’s this gorgeous, proper house with a lot of bedrooms, plenty of space, a lovely yard, and amazing neighbors. (And they bought it so long ago that the amount of appreciation and equity they have in the house now is staggering! The children are set for inheritances!)

My ex and I were fortunate because we could buy one of these spectacular forever homes: a 3,000-square-foot architectural on the hills of Brentwood.

It was gorgeous and everything I ever dreamed of open floor plans, 11-foot ceilings, large spaces, four bedrooms, a huge playroom, and plenty of outdoor space. There was room for a pool if we ever desired to have one.

I was in love. Life was sublime until one day, it wasn’t anymore.

My ex and I divorced when the children were 7 and 5. Instead of alimony, I fought tooth and nail to keep my “forever” house. I struggled for two years, paying the mortgage on time and watching as my savings dwindled. But, in my head, I knew it wasn’t a wise choice financially; I was suffering under the weight of this house, and it wasn’t good for anyone.

I had to come to terms with letting my house go. Not a remotely easy thing to do. It was my dream, my promise — to myself and my children and to not move them around. It was my “forever” house … the one I thought I would ultimately die in. Of all the places I’d lived, this was the home I’d been in the longest. I struggled with what I should do. Many nights were filled with tears.

I would lie on the floor of my children’s rooms and weep (as quietly as possible).

My heart broke at the thought of leaving. But one day, my perspective changed. I decided to stop feeling sorry for my children and myself and instead feel grateful I’d had the honor and the privilege to live in such a beautiful place, even if it was a far shorter time than I had planned.

I walked around my house, gave myself time to appreciate its beauty and craftsmanship, and recalled the happy times I spent with my family in each room. Out loud, I said “thank you” to my house. I cried tears of joy mixed with sadness. Nostalgia is a powerful emotion.

I had no regret about taking my house instead of alimony. Doing so allowed me independence, and I could sell my home on my terms and timeline. I saw my house as a means of financial freedom from my ex. When I ultimately sold it, I could walk away with a chunk of cash I could then invest on my own, supporting my two children and myself.

Slowly and carefully, I allowed myself to feel my emotions to move forward. I wrote in a journal for forty days straight to get my feelings out. I enlisted the help of a friend to go with me and see the rentals first, examining them before taking my kids. He offered a shoulder to cry on when reality hit home. I would live in one of these “temporary” abodes.

Saying goodbye is challenging.

Divorce is heart-wrenching. Moving is stressful. And putting a dream to rest is overwhelming. Combine all these, and it’s too much for one person to experience all at once.

Crying helped and having support was my lifeline.


As a realtor, I knew the real estate market so my knowledge was an unbelievable blessing. Eventually, I found the place I was looking for a large condo in the heart of Brentwood. The location allowed me and my kids to walk everywhere. I chose it for its novelty, and I wouldn’t feel alone when my children were off with their father. It was affordable, convenient, and easy — plus a pool, hot tub, and ping-pong table!

I was apprehensive when I took my kids to see it. My son, in particular, loved our old house and was so upset about the idea of moving. To my surprise and relief, he loved the condo and told me we should move there.

It turns out we were happy in our condo.

We lived there for 15 months, which gave me time to regroup. It was indeed easy living. We walked, swam, hit countless ping-pong balls, and laughed. I won’t gloss over the fact I missed my house. I longed for my place, pond, yard, and life in the hills. But the condo gave me time and space to heal and realize my kids and I were OK.

We loved being together. And I was proud of myself for facing and embracing reality.

Today, I’m a homeowner once again. I live in a slightly smaller version of my first “forever” house. Built the same year, 1959, it was a mid-century architecture, with slightly lower ceilings but a much larger piece of property.

The house is not in Brentwood, I couldn’t afford that, but it’s in a location I’ve learned to love in the hills of Sherman Oaks. Our neighbors are fabulous, and we’ve got a nature preserve right behind our house, where I go hiking with my dogs.

I’ve never been happier in a house. Life is funny that way. I won’t say it’s my “forever” house because I don’t want to tempt fate. I will say it’s a dream come true, and I’m forever grateful.

Ekuonaba Media

Ekuonaba Media

About us: follow us on: #GhanaFirst #ghana #GhanaPolitics #Ghanapoliceservice NOTE: ekuonabaTV is a reputable media organization which creates its own original content to engage its audience.