You know what happened on May 18, 2018? That’s the day Puffin and I bought a house. After months and months of looking at craphole after craphole we finally found the one. It was a magical month for sure. I was well on my way to taking myself more seriously. Because yes, I was an adult and yes, I was a mom, but I still (even today) look into the mirror and see a kid. But everything was falling into place and I was really excited.
You know what else I found out in May 2018? That I was pregnant yet again. Huge surprise? No. But coño. This meant I needed to be in a bigger place by December 2018 and the one would most certainly not be ready by then.
In September we made the big move to Costa Brava, aka my parents’ house aka the best and worst decision I’ve ever made. There is a reason you live in your house when you’re a child. You have to follow rules but you don’t really know anything except for those rules so you just go along because that’s life. Well guys, I got out. I got married, traveled, I’d even had a kid. I was creating my own weird rules. But Santiago “put his foot down” and said there would be no rent and mortgage and we were moving in with the Lamases. No one, and I mean NO ONE was more eager than Santiago. Still, to this day, 12 months later, he is elated to be my parents roommate. We even have a group chat called “Roomies” and Santiago won’t stop texting in it.
By the way, I’m sure you also inferred that we didn’t want to live through our renovation, so imagine our surprise when 2 months into moving into my parents, they decided to renovate their entire home. Cute right? New floors, new doors, new paint, new driveway, new landscaping, new kitchen. It’s been super fun to say the least.
Anyway, I moved Santi into my old bedroom, which had been converted into a nursery when Santi was born, and Santiago and I took over Bebo’s room. That’s my big brother—he was not pleased.
Obviously, there are positives and negatives to any scenario. Living at my parents house hasn’t been a 100% nightmare but it hasn’t been sunshine and roses everyday either. Surprised? Besides the fact that I just really want to live in my own home with my own things, I also want my life back. Right now, we are four parents raising two children because no one is going to tell Mama and Papa what to do. We are also four people in one marriage, if you can fathom that…
A: Santiago, can you please serve me a glass of water?
M: Ay Adriana, como jodes…
P: Your mom never nagged me. When I came home from working all day, she was the best. Tu lo molestas a toda hora!
S: Sure, baby. Maria Elena, want anything?
M: Santiago, please stop talking, it’s too early in the morning.
P: Yeah, Santiago! Spare us.
It’s nice because I have built in babysitters I can always count on. My dad takes Santi to breakfast almost every Saturday to Casa Cuba, followed by a trip to either the barbershop, Dadeland Mall or a car dealership. Sometimes, when I go to places with my own son, people say “Oh, he’s yours! Your dad showed us a picture of you!”
My mom will take Santi literally anywhere he’ll agree to go with her and she’s always happy to do it. She also lets him get in her bed and watch whatever he wants on TV. The other day it was Jaws. “I’m fast forwarding the scary parts, don’t worry..” followed by “Tiburón Mama! Mas tiburón.” And while they’re always available to literally do any activity with us and our kids, they’re also very present any time Santiago and I try to discipline Santi. The other day, followed by a massive mental breakdown, I told him he would be in time out until he calmed down. Was it the best parenting move I’ve ever made? Definitely not. But I choose that route and guess what? Mama and Papa were not pleased…
A: Santi, calmate. Uno, dos, tres…
S: (crying hysterically)
M: ADRIANA WHAT’S GOING ON??? SANTI COME WITH ME!
A: Mom, get out of the room. Stop undermining me in front of Santi.
M: Let me just have him! Pobrecito!! TONY!!!!!
P: (topless and wet hair) Oh no, stop it Adriana. Your mother never did this to you…
S: (super, super, super confused)
Everyone said this process would be a nightmare and it would take forever. But like the naïve losers that we truly are, we laughed and laughed and laughed. I’m 99% sure we’ve giggled about the other people who don’t know how to renovate a house in a timely manner. We were absolutely sure that our GC and designer Celia Domenech, along with our Permit Expeditor would make this process super smooth and super quick. (Spoiler: we were very, very wrong.)
My son is now 8 months old and my house finally just got walls. We haven’t installed floors and I still, for the life of me, don’t understand what size my kitchen is going to be. I’ve picked bathroom tiles, light fixtures, doors, handles, you name it.
But the city of Coral Gables is fickle and they need to approve everything, step by step, and they take their sweet time doing it. So, as the days turn into weeks and weeks turn into months, there is no end in sight.
I told my parents we’d probably be moving before Christmas and then we all laughed and laughed and laughed.
I’m still laughing. And I’m still at my parents’ house.