Photo: It was a splurge, and now I’m questioning its taste…. but I still love it and I’m keeping it up. The Husband put it on the wall without complaint. We’ll see how I feel about it in a week… it might continue to be displayed, but perhaps on a different wall…? No matter what, I need the reminder.
It’s funny how things go.
I had the crisis on Friday morning. Went about my day. Enjoyed the last day of camp for the boys and did some shopping with my sister and step-father (thus the sign and a few other splurges):
The shopping therapy made me feel a little better (I’m sure that I won’t feel so good when my bill comes in), but I was still feeling anxious by the time I got on the phone with The Husband for the evening debrief. He’s more attuned than I give him credit for sometimes. It didn’t take long before he asked, “are you ok? You sound like something’s wrong.”
Yeah, well… he asked and I answered.
He said he was shocked by the news. I told him, if that’s the case, he hasn’t been paying attention. He said he wondered if I valued geography/my race more than himself. I told him that I wouldn’t dignify that bullshit in general, let alone as a foundation for this conversation. He said he didn’t think he’d find another job that would pay him at the level he is right now. I told him that I’m asking for him to take a look. I’m not unreasonable. If it’s not possible, it’s not possible, but we need to choose to try. We got off the phone after a bit of quiet. Both exhausted and overwhelmed for different reasons.
I spent my day Saturday packing and worrying. What the hell had I just set into motion? I felt like I’d press the go button on a long, slow detonation process (imagine a Looney Tunes-style sequence with the button pressed and then the fire follows a comically long trail of gunpowder. There is always a character stupidly trying to blow out the flame, running along with it as it goes. That’s me. I’m the stupid one).
Then I watched my boys enjoy a pile of crabs:
I woke up at 5 on Sunday morning ready for the drive, hardened with resolve. I told Mom as I left, “I’m going back there, but I’m not going ‘home.’ I’ll be home again soon.” We’d been huddled together, talking out strategy, trying to figure out the many moving pieces of making this happen.
Then I drove the 8 solid hours here. My sister was my co-pilot, but I did all the driving. We talked about various things, but in the background of my mind, I wondered what I was going to pull up to on the other side. Who was my husband going to be? Would he be happy to see me?
What I didn’t expect, when I pulled up the driveway, was the loving joy I’d felt when I laid eyes on the house. The new roof, the gorgeous lawn, the lush garden. I love this little house. We worked so hard to get it, and we’ve worked so hard on it. It’s an oasis and a sanctuary. I walked through the door and felt the same welcoming warmth I felt the first time I walked into it, back when it was just an abandoned fixer-upper. The Husband welcomed me with soft eyes, a peck on the cheek, but the same apprehension that I brought with me. I was greeted by a sweet note from a young person I’ve gotten to know here. Another dear friend dropped off an envelope with patterns and a pin for my yarn bag.
The boys started camp, I made my appointments, I ran my meeting, I fielded a million texts and already have a full social calendar again. I slipped right back in. It was almost too easy, too comfortable. I’m not sure I know how it happened. The roots, it would seem, grow only deeper as we go.
I’m going to have to find the resolve to sustain this choice and make this change. I hope I have it. It’ll be hard without a supportive partner. Perhaps he thinks this feeling will pass. Perhaps, if he drags his feet enough, the roots will grow ever deeper and the leaving will become virtually impossible.
I write every Friday that you are loved, near and far. It’s not untrue. It’s not untrue for me, too. I’m loved here, and I’m loved there. There are people here who I love profoundly. There are people there who I love profoundly. There is a culture, rhythm, tone, tenor and hue that I miss when I’m away from home. 6 months extracted from the tethers of shared story and experience. It’s a lot to ask, it’s a lot to carry. But in the face of leaving everything hard won, hard built… Nothing, it would seem, is without cost.
Ideas have consequences.
Apologies for the late post. I had that evening meeting and it took a lot of my day to prepare for and execute. I’m back on regular schedule for the rest of the week. Expect a post from me tomorrow.
Until then, take care.