Thursday, November 7, 2013

heartache defined

so, the previous post talked about why we are moving and the difference between me and brian.

what it didnt talk about is how hard this decision was, and how emotional ive been.  

as i mentioned, there are alot of things that i dont want to leave-my friends, my mommy network, my career. but above all, my parents.

i am the oldest of 3 children, and the only girl.  i have always been a daddys girl, even when we butt heads because we are so similar.  my friendship with my mom came later, once i was in college, and we have been best friends since.  

6 months ago, my parents moved to concord from salt lake for a job for my dad.  this was not intentionally to be near us, but it was seriously fortuitous.  my dad had worked for the county as an outside consultant years prior, and his contacts had helped me land a job there as a temp during the last presidential election.  my relationship with the staff opened the doors to my dad applying for a position that became available last spring.  when he got the job, i cried. my first thought was "he's employed!"  my second was "they will be here for the baby!" and so they were.

and now, when the baby is not even 3 months old, we are leaving them behind in a place they barely know.

the range of emotions i feel just about leaving them is mind boggling:

confusion: i never cared before about living close to my parents.  during college i lived 9 hours away, and growing up my grandparents were almost never within driving distance. leaving my parents was normal and expected. but here i am now, 27 and distraught at moving far away from them.   ive never felt that way before.

frustration: why did we feel so strongly that we were supposed to move here, and they feel the same way, only for us to leave them so soon? it doesnt seem fair, or logical, and surely there must be a reason, but i cant see it yet.

guilt:  i have given them their first grandchild, and they have loved seeing her as often as possible.  my dad loves to steal her away from me at church, and seeing them dote on her has been like looking into the past at how they loved me as a baby.  they love her so much, and here i am, about to whisk her away to places that leave them to rely on pictures and memories.

sadness:  having my parents so close has been wonderful-family dinners are so fun, my dad has become a father to brian, brian has become a big brother to my brothers.  i have been blessed to see them at church, and watch people admire what good people they are. i have had the opportunity to proudly introduce them to my friends and neighbors, and brag about how great they are to their new acquaintances.  and i wont get to do that anymore.  i wont get to celebrate the small things that warrant a special dinner.  i wont get to do nails with my mom or watch football with my dad while eating his signature ribs.  sure, i can do that when i visit, but these are aspects of our relationship that have developed after i became an adult, after i got married.  having them close has fostered such a strong relationship, and ill be losing that.

justification:  i too am the oldest grandchild to my mother's parents.  when i was born, we lived close to them in New Jersey.  but when i was 6 months old, my dad was stationed in AZ, and they moved.  if they can do it without killing themselves with guilt, so can i.  the only difference is my grandparents knew the risk with an army son in law.

anxiety:  my parents have been really supportive of us and want us to do what is best for our family.  but ive struggled with the knowledge of their hurt, and ive worried and stressed and cried over what they arent saying-that they are crushed.  i worry we've disappointed them.  

divided:  i want to tell them how i feel, but to do so would be to admit to brian just how difficult this is for me.  granted, he already knows.  but this is difficult for him too, and i dont want to ruin his excitement by dwelling on my hurt.  but to keep it in makes them feel like i dont care.  so i do a poor job of straddling the line.

when i think about leaving them, i sob.  sure, i can skim over it in passing, talk about the logistics of moving away from my parents, without really feeling it.  but when i really think about it, im a wreck.  writing this post has been so difficult, both to articulate and to see the screen through salt water.  i used to scoff at those people who couldnt stomach moving away from their parents.  actually, i still do under normal circumstances.  but this isnt normal.  for once i didnt think we would be ships passing in the night- for the first time in my life, my parents are planning on staying in one place, probably until at least my dad retirement in 10 years.  i thought i would watch my parents be grandparents as my baby girl grew, that they might be here for her first steps, her first word; that i could run away on a mom date when i needed a break and catch a movie and popcorn with my madre; that id be here when my little brother got home from his mission; that i would be cleaning up the remains of my dogs destruction after they watched him for us. 

i guess its not meant to be.  and that hurts.  more than i ever thought it would, and more than id ever prepared for.  i put on a good show, saying its difficult but we will all get over it.  

but im not over it yet.

d is for...

as many of you know, we moved to concord about a year and a half ago, right out of school.  i studied for and took the CA bar and brian worked in the city.  we got a dog and had a baby, and settled in.

our 5th wedding anniversary is fast approaching, and in that time, we have moved 5 times (not including our first apt together or our brief stint living at brians grandmas).  but before we hit 5 years, that number will yet again increase.

because d is for denver. or doomsday.

brian has been offered a great job in Denver, and through all our conversations and contemplation, one thing has been clear-this opportunity will be better for our family in both the short and long term.

and for the first time in a long time, im having a hard time moving.

growing up i moved alot-the side effect of military moves/a dad with itchy feet-but only after living in a place for several years.  in some ways, that was really hard; everyone had made friends, was involved in the community and church, had solid jobs and networks, ect.  our moves as a couple have been very different-1.5 years is the longest we have lived in any one place (though sometimes in similar areas), and in some ways thats what makes this move even harder; we thought we would stay for a while, so we put down roots and got settled, only to suddenly be uprooted again.

brian is very excited.  this is a great opportunity for him career-wise, and he is excited to be in a better environment, venturing into a new area of design, and feeling more financially secure. 

i am less excited.  im licensed here in CA (after spending a year of my life devoted to the bar), i have alot of great friends here, and my parents recently relocated nearby.  with a new baby, the network i have has been a life saver and im (surprisingly) loving being a stay at home mom.  coming to grips with leaving all of that behind has been really difficult.  im terrified of being in a new city, stuck at home with a dog and a baby, with no friends and no career.  really, this is my friends' faults; if they werent so great, i wouldnt care so much. kidding. my friends here are irreplaceable and fantastic, and i dont expect to find people just like them, but ive been so blessed to have them in my life so far, and i hope to keep those friendships strong even with distance.

ultimately, ive seen how excited brian is about the job, and how badly they want him.  ive always said that i would follow his career since i had no intention of being the main breadwinner (by choice...i dont handle that kind of pressure and stress very well), and this is my chance to really live up to my word.  that doesnt mean i wont mourn my losses-the close vicinity to friends and family, the cute nursery i spent so much time on, the perfect weather, the time i spent studying for the ca bar. but im trying hard not to wallow in them.

and that doesnt mean ill wear as much fleece as the locals.  no way.

soon ill be able to add colorado to new jersey, arizona, germany, utah, washington, southern ca, and the bay area.