The past several weeks have been a blur. I’ve been completely consumed by moving out of the house followed by days of unpacking and settling in to our apartment across town. On a side note, going from a 3+ bedroom house (with a basement, yard, and garage) to a 2 bedroom apartment is no small feat! We completely underestimated how long it would take to go through all the stuff two people accumulate in 10 years and decide what to get rid of, what to take with us, and what to place in storage. All the while, we attempted to take in as many of our lasts at 1644 as we could… the last night sleeping in our room, the last visit with the neighbors, the last bunny chase around the backyard – and lemme tell you, that bunny gave our aging pup a run for his money!
If I’m being honest though, the utter chaos in our lives hasn’t been the only reason I’ve been a little MIA from social media and this here blog.
Generally, I believe myself to be a joyful person. I try to see the positive in situations, I put effort in to making lemonade out of lemons, and at the very least, I strive to keep my interactions with others upbeat. Yet over the past couple weeks, that has been a struggle. Sadness has been running amok handling many of those core memories and everything began taking on a blueish hue.
[Reece looking at the backyard – the day we moved in, and for the last time]
While everyone was congratulating us on the sale of our home, and talking about how great it is to be starting this next chapter in our lives, I was feeling anything but excited about it. Yes, I was grateful to be done with the “sell the house” phase of our life. And when we started this process several months ago, I even shared that enthusiasm. But moving is exhausting and, under these circumstances, emotionally draining, and I have a hard time overcoming my emotions when I’m so wiped out.
So there I was, in the midst of sadness, feeling confused and guilty over the fact that I should be happy. After all, we were leaving by choice.
In such times, I find myself facing an inner battle between my desires to put my typical happy spin on things, and to be authentic and real. So, for a time, quiet was the best I could do. And in that silence, I did something I rarely do… I allowed myself to be sad. I gave myself permission to feel every bit of grief I needed to over the life we were saying goodbye to.
Working through the sadness, rather than avoiding it, was good for a change. It was hard at first, but if there’s anything I strive to be real about, it’s that life isn’t always sunshine and rainbows. And yet sometimes, apparently I’m the one who needs that lesson the most.
A while back, I wrote about what we were really leaving behind at 1644…
The more that we reminisce about this house, the more we recognize that it isn’t just the house we are saying goodbye to – it’s the couple that moved in here all those years ago. The dreams that they had and the goals that they shared. Everything from the ridiculous arguments they had because they didn’t know any better, to the conversations about which bedroom would one day become a nursery. In a lot of ways, I feel like we let them down and it’s hard to leave here without that happy ending they longed for.
I’ve shared a look at our truths and what going through the process of selling our house has meant for us…
We don’t have all the answers, but deep down we feel that leaving 1644 will be so much more than simply a change in our address. It feels as though we are closing one chapter of our lives, and we are preparing (and being prepared) for the next – whatever that may be. Of course we have ideas, dreams, and ambitions. We even have a few plans. The reality, however, is that we are expecting to sell our home, we don’t have another one waiting for us, and we know that things don’t always work out according to our plans. But that’s ok. Because our truth is that His plan has always been greater than our own.
And I’ve revealed what it is for us to be out of our comfort zone…
There is something truly remarkable about how clear God’s sovereignty becomes when we are in a place that we cannot rely solely on our own knowledge and understanding. We tend to take for granted that we are the ones in control until we stop pushing on the gas and start to recognize that we were never really behind the wheel to begin with. Most times we really just want to sit tight and live a life so familiar it doesn’t matter who’s driving. But the best thing about stepping away from our comfort zone is that what is gained as a result stretches far beyond the experience itself.
As I read back through my own words, I realize that I am once again excited to forge ahead. I think we both sort of thought that those months spent preparing to leave our house was going to be the difficult part, and that once we signed the papers (or ideally even before that), we’d have a good idea of what the next step was going to look like. The letting go, need to trust, and growth are all a part of this journey, and even though we are still uncertain of what the future holds, I’m reminded that we know Who holds our future.
1644 has officially been in the possession of another family for a week now, and when I asked the Mister if it felt different, he mentioned that he felt relief. Admittedly, I guess I do too. So for the time being, we’re going to do our best to enjoy moving on, take advantage of the good things about this transition phase, and make the most of this slightly more carefree apartment life while it lasts.
[moving in to the apartment]