It’s been a while, and I am sorry. I meant to write. I thought, repeatedly, “Today, I will write, and say thank you. Today, I will sit down and find the words to say thank you. Today I will not sound trite and find a way to say thank you!”
There were simply no words I could use. None that sounded real, genuine, and considered. Everything I wanted to say seemed to ring hollow when I read it back, and like a bad Christmas ‘thank you’ note, time passed, and I hadn’t sent it, even though it had a stamp, and was right there, ready for the post box.
I moved house. A stranger, now a friend, Zoe Gray, saw what was happening and set up a GoFundMe account. She literally saved us from a bedsit & temporary housing. There was no WAY we could have found the £3k needed to move. You donated. You spoke to me, and let me know again that I was not alone. You helped me, my husband, and my children (the 3 at home) to find a house. You gave me the belief that it would be okay. You messaged me and talked to me, asking how I was. You gave advice, and you helped financially.
There is no way to say thank you. I have tried, so many times, but there’s no way to say thank you for something this big.
Instead, I will open a door onto my life, as I did back in January. It’s the least I can do – I owe it to you…all of you.
I am sat at my desk. We brought one desk, three beds, and a bookcase when we moved. Everything else was ruined and lost to the black mould creeping like a cancer across the outer walls of the old house. So, here I am, sat at my desk, in the dining room.
We have a dining room.
My son is behind me, sat at the table my friend, Dawn, gave me. He has his girlfriend and 6 friends sat around the table, celebrating a birthday. My husband is in the living room, through the archway, laid on a carpet, drawing an outline for a painting for our youngest daughter’s Xmas gift. The washing machine, kindly given to me by a friend of my friend, Lisa, is washing clothes out in the conservatory (we will bag them later, ready for the dryers at the launderette tomorrow – I hate rain because it means I can’t use my clothes line!), and the back door is open, letting in air from the (bit too big) garden.
The cooker works. The kitchen isn’t falling apart. The walls are clean and don’t run with water from hip-height down. We have more toilets than we know what to do with. My son can fit his bed in his room. My youngest has a place she (and her Aspergers & ADD) can escape to, that my 16yr old doesn’t have to share. I have a room without damp.
I sleep through the night, almost.
I can ask friends round, without wanting to crawl into the ground and hide from shame.
And it’s all thanks to you. People I don’t *know*, but owe everything to.
It’s hard, it’s a struggle, but it will always be a struggle. That’s okay. Struggling for something worth loving is a whole new ballgame to struggling to meet the rent for a hovel last featured in a Charles Dickens novel.
So, thank you. A million times, I thank you. This house is a home – and I haven’t had a home in 12 years.
Thank you. From us all.
(Picture is my son, girlfriend, and friends, enjoying ramen…because who doesn’t like ramen!)