Mixed feelings are so hard to deal with. I’ve learned that this past week after moving with my family half way across the country. We had been living in the Midwest for more than six years, a place where I never felt like I fitted in; I wanted to move for a long time, but in the last few days I’ve been sad about leaving family, friends and a good job behind.
The first three years I was living in Kansas were for the most part awful for me, mostly because I didn’t feel at home and I had a hard time finding friends or a job I liked. I would say that in more than one occasion I said how much I hated living there. The last three years were completely different; I started a job I really enjoyed, I met and got reacquainted with wonderful people and I had my two children.
While I found an amazing group of women I am so happy to call my friends and my son loved visiting his grandparents, I still missed time spent with my sister and her family, especially since my children were born. In Kansas my kids have grandparents who love them so much and are so fun, but in the Philadelphia-area, where we are now, they have cousins their age. I wanted my kids to grow up with cousins.
I am a firm believer in sticking by your decisions and being happy about them because you can always change course if you really have to, but mostly because I see no point in wondering about a million ‘what ifs’. But when the happiest of text messages came yesterday morning, my friend in Kansas had a baby, I could not help but wish I was back there, making a meal or two for her, just like she did for me when each of my children were born. I also thought how fun it would have been for our kids to be in the same class.
This morning, however, we met my sister and her kids at a children’s museum. My oldest was happy and excited and learning so much from his cousins, they were thrilled to show him around. I am just so happy to have the opportunity to be with them on random mornings, instead of having to plan a trip every time I want to see them.
This is the curse of the immigrant, or the person who moves around the country, we move and leave friends and family behind. We are never complete, as we miss so many of our family and friends, but somehow we move on, sometimes keeping in touch with friends in those far away places, other times leaving them as part of our memories, hopefully living in the present.
I’ve moved before, many times in fact, but I have never experienced these mixed feelings. I know in my heart and my mind that this move is the right move for our family but I didn’t know how many roots we had planted in Kansas. I do hope that friends and family will come visit soon; we already have tentative dates to visit them.
From now on you’ll get to read a lot about my experiences in a new place, including meeting new people, finding community resources in a new place, and setting up a new home. I also intend to give Lemon Water a broader scope, and be a resource for a wider community of women.
In the mean time, Do you have any recommendations for me?