|Re:vigorous way of life/new thread||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: HeidiNYS (HeidiNYSaol.com)|
|Date: Sun, 15 Apr 2001 23:06:32 -0600 (MDT)|
<< From: JoycePlath [at] aol.com [mailto:JoycePlath [at] aol.com] Sent: Thursday, April 12, 2001 8:42 AM To: neesie [at] sonic.net; cohousing-l [at] cohousing.org Subject: Re: [C-L]_Cohousing as a rigorous way to live It is reassuring to read that others have a difficult time during the first year of a new CoHousing experience. For me, after eight years of planning and nurturing Marsh Commons it was painful to move in and discover that a substantial portion of my fellow co housers resented my efforts as project manager (fortunately everyone seems to really enjoy the built environment). The first year was a lot like a bad marriage with undercurrents of resentment that made even small negative exchanges intensely hurtful. At that time we had eight of our twelve homes completed. Six months ago the last four homes have been occupied, giving us a healthy twenty to thirty folks at dinner three times a week, and new energy to complete assorted projects. The center of gravity has shifted and suddenly it is a very special place to live. A month ago I had knee surgery and was amazingly well cared for by my community. There were flowers, meals, books, bottles of wine and help drinking it, trips to the bank, postoffice, and pharmacy, and the use of a bicycle delivery service for anything I needed during the first few weeks. During the time that I could not walk, it was comforting to know that with the phone next to my bed I could get help if needed it with in a couple of minutes from half a dozen neighbors. Recently there has been a casual group that goes to the movies on Tuesday night after dinner, Another group sings, with the help of two guitars one night a week. In a week or two our recreation room will be done and we will celebrate with a dance party for a couple who are both turning forty. This Sunday we will have our first egg hunt and brunch with many friends are planning to attend. We still have some healing to do from earlier experiences but gradually our level of trust is improving. I have gone from a position that I might well have to move out (that bad marriage feeling) to a sense that this indeed is growing into a neighborhood that is caring, supportive, spontaneous, and fun. It took two years of living here to begin to feel this way. Joyce Plath Marsh Commons, Arcata, California JoycePlath [at] aol.com Dear Joyce, whew!! congratulations and even more sympathy on awhat must've been a very rocky period. a long rocky period. I'd say we are on the other side of this dynamic, btw: We did quite well, exceptionally well getting to and thru move-in, over years and years of work, and losing cared-for members who couldn't wait another 2 years for move-in, etc. After a year or 2 of pretty easy going, that is a yr or 2 after move-in is when folks hereabouts got crankier!!! Now ...... I think we're having to look at ourselves more realistically. On another, perhaps related note, how are couples lives impacted by living in co-housing?? Do some folks in your communities do spousal disagreements in public??? It can be awkward to be arguing with your sweetie as you walk to the car..... when the walk takes oyu past a dozen folks you know!! And in Co-Housing, built as ours is, with cars parked away from houses, it easily happens that one person stops for an interchange, causing the partner to fume in silence/ try to get the other to hurry up..... etc. In some instances, I see a couple fond and affectionate and never having a tiff you can see..... and it brings up interest...: is this what they are really like!? All the time?! Some folks are very open abt their 'stuff', and it includes lots of humor...... Any interesting stories from your communities?? I can't offer a really funny one without figuring out how to protect the couples anonymity..... it'll come... I do know friends in a community, who are unhappy in their marriage, separated under their co-roof. They are in the closet about their separation to their community so far!! They've shared the situation with a couple of friends, but their privacy has been respected to the degree that no-one/virtually no-one in their actual co-ho group knows. Hard to imagine in a group where folks actually do know a lot abt each other, but true!! It'd be great to hear stories and hits of co-ho humor. Ruth Hirsch, Cantines Island Co-Housing Saugerties, NY, near Woodstock. We have aquired an adjacent piece of land and are looking for one more household!!! A beautiful site, abutting the woods, overlooking the rapids, around the corner from The Hudson River..... _______________________________________________ Cohousing-L mailing list Cohousing-L [at] cohousing.org Unsubscribe info: http://www.communityforum.net/mailman/listinfo/cohousing-l
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