Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of us moving into our family home and so I did a lot of reminiscing about our 30ish year old selves starting out on our adventure together : we were married in the October 1995, after moving into our second home together on August bank holiday weekend. we had really stretched ourselves to buy this large farmhouse on the edge of town and it had seemed like a very big financial jump and a brave thing to do. twenty years later I still feel lucky to have bought this house but it no longer seems so brave.
We had no idea back then that we might need space for a stairlift, room for a downstairs bedroom and plenty of storage for wheelchairs, nappies etc. Joshua was not even a twinkle back then and instead we chose to fill the house with cats and dogs and to focus on our careers, in order to pay for our new home.
Six years after moving in, Joshua was born and our lives changed forever and we were introduced to a world with words we had not been exposed to before :such as portage, statements, DLA , educational psychologist , epilepsy, continence and seizures. I may have told you before but when the Headteacher of Joshua’s nursery school believed that he was going to need some one-to-one support at primary school and she said ‘ we are going to need to get Joshua statemented’, in my mind I heard ‘sectioned’ and my response was ‘Really? he’s not that bad is he?’.
We have faced many difficult decisions in this house, none being harder than whether or not to opt for the hemispherectomy offered by Great Ormond Street Hospital last year. We have shed some tears in this house and shared much laughter too and Joshua and I have seen every hour of the day and night in this house, due to his lifelong sleeplessness which is now worse than ever.
We are very lucky that here we have the space that we all need to get away from each other when necessary and it offers real potential to grow with Joshua into his adulthood too. We have outbuildings that can readily be adapted to make him a self-contained, ground floor suite for his bedroom and living accommodation, attached to the main house but offering us both some separation too.
So over the last 20 years, this house has grown with us and thankfully, continues to meet our needs – happy anniversary house!