Wednesday, April 26, 2017

On moving for the 4th time in 5 years...

We're moving again, and with that always come this weird angsty energy that is also coupled with a complete lack of caring. It's all very complicated. For example, it suddenly became VERY urgent to go through all of the baby clothes, purge what doesn't work, re-fold the favorites, and re-do my whole baby-clothes-organizing system. This was important to me, although it would be considered very low on the list of Things That Have to Get Done Before We Move. But then there's things like our living room area rug, which has been noticeably crooked for about a month and every time I think about re-positioning it for room symmetry and ultimate feng shui, I shrug and think "well, we're moving it soon so what does it matter." The counters are littered with crumbs, but we're moving so...not my problem. Priorities!

I'm cleaning out junk drawers but foregoing laundry. I'm doing a significant amount of online shopping, only to return most of it because WHY am I adding things to my life while at the same time filling up trash bags worth of clothing to donate to Goodwill. I'm blogging for the first time in MONTHS while nearly every room in my house is in a mild to moderate state of disaster (or as I like to call it, "staging for the move"). We all have our coping mechanisms.

I'm also having surgery, because what better time to undergo a little hernia repair procedure than 2 weeks before the movers arrive. It will be fine. I'm fine. You're fine. We're fine.

Anyone who moves frequently, particularly military families, has stories of things that go awry leading up to or during the big move. Everything is going smoothly until it isn't. The day we were moving out of our house in Virginia, I caught a horrendous stomach bug. Vivid, terrible memories of laying on a deflated air mattress in our empty room as the power was turned off and Zach scrambled to clean the entire house alone while I was wishing for a swift death. The night before Zoe and I were set to fly home from Germany, we realized our plane tickets had not been confirmed, therefore we didn't have a seat on the flight. It's still too soon to discuss the stress of that night. For this move, the hope is that the timing of my surgery is the only bump in the road...but there's still time for more. Pray for us, yall.

In the meantime, the healthy thing to do is process the emotions of another move and help guide our little 3-year-old through all of this as well. It's very easy, as you would expect. We simply explain, with a cheery smile and lots of confidence, that we are going to a NEW house to meet NEW friends. Yay! Oh and also there's snow! And our doggy comes with us. And Eliza comes with us, too. And all our toys come with us (although I am absolutely lying to offering false reassurance to my child because you better believe there are some toys that will be "lost in the move" and I have no problem placing that blame on the movers. Looking at you, noisy toys). I was feeling really proud of how we're all handling this until Zoe looked at me and said "Mama, when do the men come to take down our house?" (like one would disassemble a tent or something). So obviously we have a very good understanding of what the move entails. Also, we went to the beach last week and there was a little bit of confusion over whether the beach rental was our new house. If only, Zo! If only...

I'm doing a lot of reflecting as we're preparing to leave South Carolina. I didn't love Lexington when we first moved. In fact, I didn't like it much at all. I take a while to warm up to things (and maybe also people). But now, as we prepare to leave, I find myself driving through town with very warm feelings and a bit of nostalgia. Isn't that always how leaving is? 

I'm feeling sad about leaving this house that we love; the first home we bought (and with the best neighbors!). I'm feeling sad about leaving the place we brought Eliza home...the place our family became four. I'm feeling sad about leaving the dear friends we have here, especially as I look back and remember the first months we were here and wondering if I would ever make connections and whether we would find "our people". We did. And I'm so thankful. I'm feeling sad about leaving the church that has become our home. I'm grieving the fact that we will no longer be a few hours away from our families...easily the best part about our time in South Carolina. I can't even talk about it right now.

BUT...good things are ahead for us. We are excited about New York, about being at West Point, about reuniting with dear friends there. We are NOT excited about the winter. Ok, I am not excited about the winter. Zach and Zoe are very enthusiastic about it and let me tell you how much fake smiling I have done when Zoe gets all amped up about the snow at our new house. I imagine arriving in the summer will be a huge letdown for her. Maybe we should do a better job of preparing her for the lack of snow in June. I'll add that to the list.

It's hard to be in this transition state...this is always the hardest part for me, the part between staying and going. The weeks leading up to the move...the preparation, the goodbyes, all of the emotions, the stress, the details, the big picture. I know now, with a few moves under my belt, that it's ok to be a little bit of a mess during this stage. Once we get there, once we settle in, things will regain the balance of our normal life and we will find our groove and make this new place yet another place to call HOME. But for now, we press through this uncomfortable part, we do our best to be honest about how we're doing and what we're feeling, and we take lots of deep breaths. We also consider upping our meds, whether our meds be of the prescription variety or of the coffee/wine/chocolate variety.