First off, a brief apology. I’ve had so many texts and phone calls and messages of well wishes and questions of how things are going, and I am trying to respond as best as I can. I’ve been a bit preoccupied because 72 hours before the move, this is what my house looked like:
I can seriously say, I have absolutely no idea where I would be without my friends. On both sides of the pond, my friends have absolutely blessed me with the best gifts they could give: loving my kiddos and helping me through a massive undertaking, supporting me practically and emotionally- cleaning out my fridge freezer, organising our things, wiping snotty noses, cooking meals, letting me stay at their houses overnight, and listening to me as I figure out the next steps. To all of my friends and family who have helped in this process, I am so overwhelmingly humbled to receive your help and love. People who love us in Texas are helping my mom and dad create toy closets and organise their home to accommodate our family- especially because my mom’s health is possibly the worst it has ever been- so bad in fact that we are going to stay at my brother and sister-in-law’s house while we search for ours instead of my parents. The docs, rightfully so, think that the energy demands of hosting people are too taxing on her weak body. I hate multiple sclerosis, but that’s another blog post. My brother and sister are so amazing to let us have their place. What a sacrifice, and I feel so loved.
In this move, we are taking 7 suitcases, a guitar, 3 carry-ons, 4 car seats, a pushchair, a large stuffed tiger, and ourselves and starting over.
We are forced to look at every single item in detail and make a decision about it. It is exhausting and tedious. It is complicated by the fact that although you are not going to be able to take an ironing board and an iron, you still need it up until the last minute- the same goes for microwaves, cars, cots, garden equipment, beds, linens, dishes . . . so the logistics have been a bit of a puzzle.
In an amazingly humbling and beautiful way, the goodbyes of moving allow you a really unique glance into how meaningful you have been to other people- and this has absolutely blown me away, and been the most encouraging, loving, life-giving affirmation. I hope to regularly tell people how they have impacted my life while I see them everyday- instead of waiting until their memorial service or good-bye party. I want to speak life into people and affirm them as I see them. This has given me such a motivation to do that!
Today as I sped through and cleaned the entire upstairs, I got this rush of adrenaline that I can only remember having during graduate school, planning our wedding, and labour and delivery. It is this “WHO-YA!” self-esteem boost that says, “Dang girl this is really hard, but LOOK! You are doing it!”
However, I absolutely know that I could not be doing this without my village of people whom I dearly love, so many of whom, I cannot even fathom not being able to see on a daily and weekly basis. My husband James always said this would be a temporary move to the UK, but I didn’t view it that way. I poured myself into my community and built amazingly genuine and intimate relationships with so many beautiful people- from so many cultures, demographics, and age groups. I know for certain, that I have lifelong friends that will span the globe- and so in some ways, it feels silly to say good-bye- more like a “I’ll talk to you later this afternoon!”
And so today, I’m especially grateful for friends and technology that allows us to stay connected.
So many people have asked about the kids- and thank you for asking.
7 year old Scarlett points two thumbs up and says, “this is me happy,” then points them down, “this is me sad.” She then sticks her thumbs together and says, “this is how I feel about the move.” She looks forward to homeschool with me for the next 18 weeks because she won’t have PE, and when she does go back to school she can have mufti-day every day (meaning no school uniforms), and desperately wants a climbing tree in our next home.
Evan, 4.5 years old, invited his grannie, lovingly called “Cheese,” to a party at his new house. When Cheese asked where his new house would be, he said “somewhere called America.” He told his nursery he would like to pack his friend Max in his suitcase. I’ve been taking photos of things to sell online. Whenever he cannot find something, he scrunches his eyebrows and asks me “DID YOU TAKE A PICTURE OF IT MUM?” I think he thinks I have a magic disappearing camera, lol. He has had a lot of moves in his little lifetime. The night before our last move, James asked Evan if he would like to help move houses the next day. Enthusiastically, he said, “Yes daddy! I will push reallllly hard.”
So in 48 hours and 18 minutes I have to say a goodbye to my home- I wish I could just pull Texas closer to England or pack my friends in the suitcase with me.
There is more to say, but tears are filling my eyes (again) so for now, it’s a goodnight.