In addition to packing and unpacking, moving unearths all kinds of things within us - attachments, stories, fears and expectations we didn’t know we had, even as we turn our faces towards a shiny future. In this process, I’ve learned how much I love my current home (like my actual house) and how hard it’s going to be to say goodbye. Or is it? Can I change that?
Over the weekend, we were driving back from T&D’s Cats of the World (Have you been? Go!) out in Penns Creek. It was our first visit to the animal rescue after five years of central PA living. We were remarking on the work they are doing, while admiring the beauty of the rolling hills here as we cruised up and down the bucolic roads. The conversation inevitably turned to the move to Providence, the logistics, who might help us pack, if we’re going to do the move in one day or two. And, I couldn’t help it...I started to visualize leaving this house empty, walking through the bare rooms, and then I started to get really, really sad.
You guys, I never really wanted a house. I never wanted a white picket fence or a yard to take care of. I always thought I’d be a city gal working towards a row house. We bought this house when we thought our then landlords were selling the apartment we were renting. When we moved in, everything went to...crap. The bathtub faucet fell off the wall during our second shower. The sink backed up. The roof leaked a week later. I sat on the floor in the middle of our living room, light blue paint drying on my hands, and sobbed. None of this is what I wanted, so how did we get here?
I remember a voice, “Leanne, just listen. What if everything is happening FOR you?”
Over the three years here, I’ve grown to believe this house is a living thing. I believe all places have energy and this space was just waiting for us to come here and love on it, so it could love on us right back. We painted each and every wall. We cleaned up the backyard and unearthed rose bushes. We’ve held the most amazing holiday parties and baby showers here. We cried during our infertility struggles and then sobbed some more when we found out we were pregnant in the hallway. I labored here for 22 hours with a birth pool in our bedroom. I started my business here. We fed this place’s energy and it fed us right back. No wonder I’m having a hard time visualizing life beyond its walls. No wonder I get emotional about packing up our things and saying goodbye.
So, instead, I’m envisioning how the wooden frames of this house have been acting as a huge embrace. They’ve protected my family. Encouraged. Smiled during the good. Acknowledged and held us up and together during the not so good. I’m grateful. And, even while I’m feeling some reluctance to go...I know that this next move is happening for us, too. Not to us. This move will be full of surprises and adventure and love, if we let it. If I let it. Maybe instead of thinking of all the goodbyes I start thinking of all the gratitude, of the next family who will love on this place as much as we have.
It can feel like a lot is happening TO you when you make a big change or when you’re forced to, but what if we reframed that statement and thought of everything happening FOR us? Everything happens in divine timing. Every move. Every delay. Every challenge. Everything that we think is hard in the moment might be revealing another set of clues along the journey. What we perceive as difficult might actually be our biggest life’s lessons. Can that be a hard pill to swallow for an impatient gal like me? Yes. But, I’m trying. Moving to Providence is the next big adventure of our lives. Selling this house doesn’t mean I’m letting go of memories or that I’m ungrateful for our time here. And, the fact that there are still so many unknowns doesn’t mean that it wasn’t the right next step for us, either. Everything is happening for me and my family. Everything is happening FOR yours, too.
As always, I adore hearing from you. Have you had a home you’ve loved so much? Did you have a ritual or process for letting go? Please head over to the blog and post it there. Some of the conversations that take place in my email are too good not to share. ;)
P.S. Writing to you has been a bigger joy than I ever could have imagined when I started these letters in 2015. I plan on writing more and more in the months to come. Thank you for reading these letters and sharing with your loved ones. Are you a writer? I want to know! Send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to your blog or newsletter so I can check out your work and connect some more. Yoga + writing = my happy place.