I knew I wouldn't actually be home to write my five year anniversary blog on the actual anniversary - which as you can imagine was a tad upsetting because I'm a big fan of tradition. But as I sat down this morning, just a few days after it passed, with my warm mug of tea I realized what was really important. I had the chance to take the time to re-read and thoroughly enjoy each anniversary blog, and I found myself smiling. A behavior I haven't engaged in all that regularly, lately.
So why am I tardy with the marking of what is such a personal occasion for myself? The four of us were spending what will likely be our final week in Copalis Beach at Iron Springs together this past week.
Indeed. And this most recent one has changed the course of our lives forever, and we will never be the same.
Tom's company offered him a significant promotion - one he'd more than earned. And to accept it came with one very life changing stipulation:
Months later, there are still a lot of unknowns. Like how long our entire world will be packed into a couple of PODS and stored in a facility in Los Angeles. Or what our new permanent address will be - and how much of said belongings will actually fit into the new square footage at that address. Or what it will be like to return to the city I'll always say we left on purpose.
This is how I feel about June 22. Which is a Thursday, not a Monday. But same idea. Maybe it won't come.
I always reflect on the lessons I've learned over the course of the year as I think back on this day (or as it is, around it). And while I wish I could say this very deep truth has settled with me, it absolutely has not. I am a big fan of my comfort zone. So much so that I'd rather just not leave it, ever really. So what I hope for, is that a year from now I will be able to say I've grown because I've willingly (as in not kicking, screaming and crying - even if just internally) allowed myself to be uncomfortable.
I couldn't help but smile when I read what one of my goals was from last year: to use my CPAP machine each night. And not to just use it, but to have "...grand success at finally conquering this problem..."
And guess what: I did :) The other night I used it almost nine hours. That's pretty remarkable and not entirely the norm. But the norm is at least five. Usually longer. And I can't believe I'm saying this - but it's actually something I have come to count on and appreciate.
I would have bet actual money that would never happen. So if that can occur, I just might be able to handle being outside my comfort zone. Though I won't be betting even a penny on that either.
This lesson I have learned. And I'm honestly better at it today than I've ever been. It took several long months of not knowing what was happening with our lives, or when, for me to really truly learn this.
Right now, I think we have our temporary housing figured out (nothing is for sure til the paperwork is signed by all parties.) Everything seems to be in order for the actual move and vacating our amazing home in time for the new owners to take possession. And we have a great Real Estate agent and Mortgage Broker lined up to help us with the purchase of our next home. But at least if any of that goes astray, I've got some ability to handle it better than before. Maybe it's because I actually sleep well now, thanks to that CPAP machine.
I wanted to make this speech about eight weeks before another really big change in my life. Though exceptionally proud of and grateful for the experience Westside School gave me all the years I lived in Seattle, it was more than time to part ways when I left in mid-May. Giving up my full-time position that came with my full-time paycheck wasn't supposed to be very easy. At first, I couldn't even talk about it without crying. And it isn't lost on me what a special place, with some of the most delightful people I've known, it was. But it is no longer that special place. And fate has a funny way of helping things along sometimes. So of all the things I am most grateful for this year, it is the opportunity to walk away without drama, and to move on to something else that will not cause me great stress, pain or unbelievable frustration.
This week, I will begin the very tedious work of packing us up and preparing The Red Door for it's new family. One we hear is much like us when we first arrived - first time homeowners, young, and with a dog. It will not come without tears and longing for a different situation - one in which we could stay. I can't help but wonder what life would have been like if none of this was happening. I can't help but think about the unknowns and the fear of whether this new life will bring happiness and joy. But those are not the best things I can do. So I will be patient. I will have faith. And will think before I speak, so as to be sure I am at least making my best effort to be positive everything will work out for the best.
I said last year, decisions are just decisions. Choices are just choices. You can go back. You can erase and begin again. And even if there's evidence of the eraser, faint signs something was there before, you get another option. You can get to try again. And this year I will trust a little more, be still when things are not clear or calm. And know that my new life is up to me. It's not about the almost eight years we previously lived there. It's about now.
A year from now, I won't be sitting in a room where the windows are open and a chilly early June breeze is blowing in through the windows of The Red Door on a gray morning. I don't know where I'll be sitting. But if this blog has taught me anything, it's that I will be amazed at what a year can bring.