Recently I took the longest Sunday drive I had ever taken. The view out the side windows was nice, or at least the part I could take my eyes off the road to look at was nice. The view out the front? Well, it was nice part of the time, but over 8 hours of being reminded that beautiful things do not last is hard. The view may have become a bit blurry a few times, which was quickly remedied by a tissue.
Due to a job change, we moved. This was not an “across town move”, but different zip code, different state, different growing zone move.
No longer are we residence of Zone 5, but now get to experience gardening (and living) in Zone 7. Actually, my husband moved a few months ago, though I did not want to advertise that fact. I am sure you can understand why.
This particular Sunday Drive was so the kids and I could join him. After a few months of parenting solo, finishing up on home remodel and regular home improvement items, decluttering, and putting our house on the market, moving to a rental house sounded like a vacation. Well, sort of.
Reading the post I linked above, something I posted just over a year ago, reminds me very clearly about how much we have done this past year concerning our house. When we started that project, we did not think it would take as long as it did. My thoughts were along the lines of 6 months, not 2 years. As it turned out, the only reason my husband even saw the hand rails on the stairs was that he came back to help drive the moving truck.
While we saved money (thousands of dollars) in the overall home remodel project by not having someone else act as a general contractor or do all the work within one company, the trade-off was time. It took longer as we did not have the connections to electricians, drywall installers, insulation installers, etc. The last step alone took about 6 months to finish as the carpenter was working on other jobs. Once he was able to focus on our house it was finished in just a few weeks.
No, we did not foresee a move coming when it did, or else we would not have taken on such a large change to our house. If only we all had a magic ball that could see into the future …. Since we do not, we make decisions with the best information we have at the time. That is all any of us can do.
“The best information we have at the time”, that is also one of the prompts for the move. My husband graduated with his Masters, after 2.5 years of night classes while working full time, back in May. While I was looking forward to a year of calm, time where we could spend as a family reconnecting and reassuring, it was not to be so. At least, it is not going to look like I thought it would.
There were some changes coming down the line at his work, something he had picked up on but which had not been announced by the higher-ups. In June, his work officially announced the changes. The majority of workers were surprised, being unsure of what this meant for the future. Thankfully we had talked about these possibilities, looking at our options and talking through what-ifs. While things could have turned out better for us, they could have stayed the same or gone worse. It was a huge unknown with no guarantees.
Even with that emotional preparation on our part, having news like this become ‘official’ makes it all the more real.
Going ahead with a job search, moving to a new state and out of Small Town, moving again to where we do not have family or a support network was not easy decision or task. We have done it before, though this time we have the added challenge of two kids. Two kids who do not handle changes in routines very well. Two kids who still struggle with feeling secure some days. Yes, we took that into account. We kept coming back to “we can either move now, or wait and potentially have the timing decided for us at some unknown point in the future.”
Knowing that raising of our kids is our responsibility is why we have taken classes, read books, worked as a family to find things that work for us. We have tried to grow and become the parents they need us to be. We have tried to find ways to help them grow as people, to become contributing, well balanced adults in the future. Are we perfect at it? Oh, gosh, no! I fail just as much as anyone. Also, I hold myself to a higher standard now, which makes my introverted self-analyzing all the more intense. However, sometimes I get it right, and we all get to take two steps forward.
So, we have moved. All the blog posts flying through my head, all the possible things I have wanted to share, all the wonderful fall ideas I have taken pictures of to show you and spring-board your inspiration for autumn porch decorating ideas or garden improvements have had to take a back to seat to the knowledge that every day I chose to do something else meant a day longer of parenting by myself, of having my husband live the life of a bachelor in a new place with no supports.
I feel as if I have made this excuse before, but really, is this not the story of all of our lives. None of us can do it all, there is only so much time in the day. There are things you need to say “no” to in order to say “yes” to others.
We now live in the equivalent of former Big Town. It is not a Huge City, but large enough to make me uncomfortable and feeling crowded after our years in Small Town and having grown up in the country where you could not see your neighbors due to the hills and trees. It has taken me time to start feeling upbeat about this move, to be honest. From former moves, I know that I can live in a Huge City and still survive. I have already started mental lists about all the positives of our new location, which helps begin to see the beauty of the place. This always helps with attitudes of gratefulness rather than murmuring and strife.
Thank you all for sticking with me through these odd times, where I would post for a week, then disappear. Or where gardening posts were sparse while other things were on my mind. I hope you continue to stop by and see what this new adventure brings for our family, and my (hopefully) beautiful garden.