To the astonishment of the majority of my twenty-something friends, we are going to buy a house.
Even though that's something "grown-ups" do.
Because although it may seem completely counter-intuitive, we are, in fact, grown-ups. I am still not entirely sure when I made the switch. Last I knew, I was sixteen, pathologically stupid, barefoot, and convinced that I still had decades to think about what I would be "when I grew up." Except, of course, that I woke up this morning realizing that at the end of this summer I will be by any standard an Adult.
By August, I will be married. The big commitment that according to the laws of this fine nation only Grown-Ups are allowed to make. According to several of my friends, this will mark the end of my independent life, and I will no longer be allowed to go out with them in the evenings. I wasn't aware of that rule. Luckily, I don't think that the fiancé is aware of it, either.
By August, I will own a house. That house will cost more money than I have made in my entire working life. This is a sobering realization, to say the least.
So we are in the midst of this collaborative effort to buy a house. Between my parents and grandparents, his parents, and us (not to mention the realtor and mortgage broker, who happens to be his aunt) we have quite a crowd of opinions, prejudices, and hardheaded fools. (The hardheaded fools are mostly on my side; I'm afraid it's a genetic trait. Poor Fiancé hasn't yet realized exactly what that means for the 10+ years of his life when he will be trying to raise our teenagers). The whole endeavor has been frustrating and exciting - frustrating because it's hard to find something that everyone agrees about ("No, I don't like that kind of basement," leads to, "Well, are you sure you don't want a garage?" and on, and on...) and we're balancing a fine line between caring about the valuable experience they have to offer and not caring at all about the biases that they have because of their own prior experiences. The exciting is the buying a house bit. A place where we can come home and be by ourselves. A place where I can have a garden. A place for bookshelves, comfy chairs and homemade bread. And that part makes it all worth it.