I wrote about new beginnings in my last post before Christmas, contemplating the new year. I wrote it speaking in the metaphorical; years end and new ones take their places, and yet we mostly stay the same people, live the same lives. While I made my plans, life made plans of its own, and here we are.
A few weeks ago, Josh was offered an incredible opportunity working for a company in Silicon Valley. Initially, he considered doing a long commute, as many others in his field do, but the prospect of him driving more than two hours each way daily was quickly written off. It took very little time to realize that moving was the right choice for us, and we have to do it quickly.
It’s not an ideal time. I’m in the midst of a grueling quarter, and Connor is midway through the third grade. I’m also not the ideal personality for a sudden change of pace; it’s my nature to plan things to a questionably healthy degree (list makers unite!) and I take comfort in the predictable. Despite my shortcomings though, I’m alright in a crisis (cue Arizona Robbins’ “Good Man in a Storm” speech), and, despite my anxieties, I’m a notorious optimist (I was once given the title “most optimistic” in kindergarten. Other awards included “nicest eyes” and “neatest penmanship”).
So here we are. We have just a few weeks to find a new place, pack up our current home and get situated. Our house is disappearing into boxes as the days go on. The housing market in the Silicon Valley area is insane and competitive, so we are looking for a smaller house or apartment to rent short-term until we’re more familiar with the area. It’s tough finding a balance in what we are looking for, we keep joking that it feels like we have a wish list: a family-friendly area with good schools, a home we like, and affordability, and we can only pick 2. To make it more feasible, we might have to downsize, and I’ve been reading small-living blogs in preparation. Erin, from Reading My Tea Leaves is one of my favorite writers on the topic, and her family of four living in under 500 square feet makes me feel like a minor downsize is completely do-able.
We’ll have to adapt in other ways, too. While I finish up my last few quarters at Davis, I’ll take the train up and back and do homework during the commute to kill birds with stones and make the time more productive. With any luck, I’ll be able to write more in this space too.
Rowan will start school for the first time as well. It’s something I’m nervous for, we’ve always been able to balance our time in a way that one of us was always home with the kids, but I realize that I’m far more worried about it than she will be. Bunny has always been an independent, fearless kid, and I know she’ll be beyond excited to make friends and spend more time with kids her age.
So that’s where we’re at. In limbo, in excitement, and on our way to the next big thing. It’s scary and happy and bittersweet all at once. We brought Rowan home to this house, we were barely moved in when the test showed two pink lines. She took her first steps in the kitchen and Connor learned to read in the safety of its walls. The summers in this house were hot and magical. The fireworks would go off right above our street, and we’d drag our kitchen table onto the back porch to eat outside more nights than not. We’ve made so many memories here, and now we get to make new memories somewhere else.