- Posted January 30, 2014 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Confessions from imperfect parents
Look out! Here come the Northerners!
I did my research on what people say it's like to move South when you live in the North. They say, "Transplanters", that's what I'll be called, are put into sub groups: Carpet Baggers: those who move from the North wanting to come in and make the South just like where they came from, and naturally, make some money in the process. There are those who want to come in as a newby and run everything. Then there are those who will move South and complain its too hot, there's not enough to do, they don't have this and that like it is "up North."
Well, I'm neither of those catagories. I'm just in search of a quieter, more peaceful, financially savvy life. I don't want to change the way things are in the South, I want to embrace it.
When I told my friends and family I was considering moving South, they thought I'd lost my mind. "Why would you want to do that?" they asked me. I'll be more than happy to tell you why.
Spending an average of a couple thousand a month on rent just so I can have 3 Starbucks within 1 mile from my house is just not worth the cost. Having two parents who have to work just to pay for it, again, not worth it. The cost isn't just the money. It's time, which is something we can't get back. My kids will only be kids for so long. If I don't have to, I don't want to sit in a cubicle anymore for 8 hrs a day and give my kids my remaining 5% energy level when I get home and the sun is long gone. By then, it's all about completing homework, attending appointments, baths, teeth, and cooking and eating dinner. I'm tired of missing school plays, field trips and such because I'm a working parent. Maybe I don't have to be a working parent. What a concept! I want my kids to see that we are financially responsible, but that they are our main priority. And if I can give them both a decent life financially and more of my time, sorry to say it Starbucks but I'm willing to give you up. I'm willing to be less busy with hectic schedules and more busy catching fireflies on my front lawn with my kids.
So, what will I be teaching my kids by this change? Everything.
Patience. I confess, I am the stereotypical person who will start having "comments" to say when the person in front of me on the road isn't moving fast enough. After all, I have places to go, things to do! I need to slow down. Time management. The concept of having time to actually cook as much as I should be doing is like a fantasy right now. So if we eat home more, we are also healthier, and I'm teaching my kids responsibility. More space to run. How about not having neighbors 10 feet away from you? How about a backyard where my kids can explore and run and build forts instead of sitting on the couch with a DS? Friendliness. Where I come from, it's true, we will look at you crazy if you smile at us and we don't know you. We are paranoid. We are cautious. Financial responsibility. The mall is not 10 minutes away to go to when I'm bored. Less opportunity to spend = less spending. Time is spent more creatively. It's not to say that we can't live financially responsibly in an area filled with lots to do, but the downfall is that such an area does provide more opportunity to spend. It's true that if you want to be busy, you can find a way to be over busy anywhere, but it's also true that a calmer environmental change of pace does the soul good.
My kids would rather have my time than my money. I'm ok with not making (or needing) as much money, because to me, I'm learning that time isn't money... money is time and time is much more valuable.