Moving is a major grief event. Last year at this time, I was bracing myself for the heartache of telling my children, family, friends and coworkers that my husband and I were moving to Florida. It was what I refer to as “the year of the lasts”:
*The last time the kids would just drop by to say “hi”.
*The end of being a part of the “everyday memories”. Now we are memories associated with “visits”.
*No more being the parents/grandparents/aunt/uncle who were a part of every family event/occasion.
*No more last minute calls from the kids to join them for dinner.
*No more being in Memorial Stadium for Husker home football games. I’ve been going since I was 12 years old.
*No more spaghetti dinner every Sunday at my mom and Dad’s house with our kids, our granddaughter, siblings, in-laws, nieces and nephews.
*The last time we would be entertaining in our home.
*The last time we would be having dinner with our friends.
I think you get the picture…so much change, so much loss.
This year is “the year of the firsts”. It comes with its own unique losses.
*The first time we weren’t with our family for major holidays.
*The first time we weren’t able to make it to family events.
*The first time we lived in a temporary housing arrangement. It doesn’t feel like home. It’s like being in a constant state of transition. I don’t have a HOME yet!
*The first time I’ve had meltdowns because I miss so much of what I left behind.
Change is hard. I crave the familiar, and at times I want things to be the way they were for the last 52 years. My head knows it will never be the same, but my heart keeps pulling me back. My meltdown moments come and go. I really don’t know what will trigger them. But here’s is what I do know:
*I know it’s okay to be sad.
*I know I’m going to cry.
*I know my husband doesn’t like to see me feel this way, but he’s always right beside me.
*I know that I can always call, text, Facetime, Skype, and Snapchat with my family and friends in between visits.
*I know that we have found and made some really wonderful friends in Florida.
*I know that when these meltdown moments come along, I am not alone. I can call my Florida friends for a supportive shoulder. They are in the same situation. Seems no one is really from Florida. We are each other’s “family away from family”.
*I know the sun will come up, both literally and figuratively. After all, I now live in the Sunshine State!
*I know that I found an awesome group of Husker fans to watch the games with.
*I know it won’t always feel “temporary”.
Most importantly, I know that when I pray, I include all that I am grateful for. That’s what helps me get through my meltdown moments.