Just over two weeks ago, I stood in an empty house and wondered for a moment if it wasn't too late to back out. To hail down the moving van and tell him to come back. To unload the kids and the dog and put all of our belongings back where they had been the week before. I didn't do any of that, of course. I locked the door to the house that was no longer mine and drove off as the sun was coming up over the Midwestern horizon. Flat and expansive, sky for days. Over the last decade, I had loved and hated it in equal measure.
Any given day, I could have given you a list of all the things I didn't like about living there. But as I drove past all of the places that had become so familiar, I realized some of what I said I didn't like were things I had simply never fully appreciated. Much like when I left Charleston at 18 for an adventure halfway across the country, I was so ready to go. So sure of my ability to be happier elsewhere. "...sometimes I can hear my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I'm not living."* I could have been happy there. A different happy, a different person-such is the tone of each path we do or don't take.
I cried a lot the first few days. I cried as the boys napped while I drove through Kentucky. I cried onto my hamburger at our stopover in Tennessee. I cried after our family left that first night in the new house. This thought in the back of my head kept shouting, "What if all of this was a mistake?" And I had to work really hard to tell myself all of the things I already knew:
Change is hard.
Change is scary.
Change is good.
As the week progressed, the change became less hard and less scary. I took the boys to the beach and I remembered all of the reasons why I chose to come back.
The boxes are now almost entirely unpacked. We've begun to settle into our new life here. I no longer worry that this was a mistake. I am still a little sad, but mostly content to be smack dab in the middle of all this transformation. And with it, a new breath of life into my writing.
For all of my longtime supporters and friends, thanks for being here. For following me through the years and leaving me words of encouragement through all of my transformations. When I first started blogging, I was a few months shy of having Landon, my firstborn. How far we've come since then! And for all of those new to my corner, welcome! I look forward to growing with you.