A huge turning point for both Brian and myself was finally selling our home in South Bend. It was weighing heavily on our minds daily until a month and a half ago. For Brian it was the financial side of it and the stress of all the "what if's" maintenance wise as another South Bend winter was approaching. For myself, it was not only the financial burden it was putting on us, but the emotional burden. I fully went through all five stages of grief with leaving the house. At one point, I was so upset, I even googled if it was normal to grieve a move and leaving a home behind, and it was comforting to find that it totally is. I hit my lowest low with this move. With the house still in our possession, I had this completely unrealistic idea of going "home" in my head. At the same time, I was thinking, what the hell is wrong with me, I just moved into a huge house in a beautiful community, I have three healthy kids and an amazing husband and here I am boo hoo'ing about how much our new life sucked. There are people out there with real problems like having nothing or their children have a horrible disease, or their spouse has passed, etc. Who was I to complain and nit pick my new situation. My bull headed stubbornness got the best of me, and I resisted to adjust to a new normal. I wanted my old normal.
Once we received an offer and began the process of the sale, I cried about it for about a day, but then began to see the light at the end of the tunnel. For poor Brian on the other hand, who was handling a majority of the decisions regarding the sale between the Realtor and buyer and inspections and so on, it was a complete nightmare. Inspections did not come back in our favor, and dealing with hiring repair men and getting second opinions on various things when you are 2,000 miles away, while hoping you aren't getting ripped off was not easy. Thank the good Lord for our outstanding Realtor for dealing with most of this, but poor Brian felt the brunt of it, too. It was very stressful. A midst it all, Brian had a conference to attend in Germany, and it just so happened to land during the week we were ready to close. It was like the last hurdle before we could seal the deal. Unfortunately. at our cost, we had to delay closing an additional 5 days, but once it was done, it was done!!! The sense of relief was tremendous.
Not being home for the kids birthdays has been hard, too. Since having kids, we have always had a family birthday at our house with our closest family members. Landen was lucky because we were in Indiana during his birthday, so he got his celebration. Poor Nolan doesn't realize that his birthday has come and gone. He associates "birthday" with a party. So even though he still had presents and cake, he will still say things like, "for my birthday, I want that toy". It's hard for him to understand. Little Gavin doesn't know the difference. He only celebrated his first birthday with a party, so he doesn't even know what he is missing. I would say it's hardest for me, of course. Growing up, my mom always celebrated our birthdays with a family gathering and it was a celebration. I have great memories of fun with my cousins, grandparents, aunts and uncles celebrating birthdays! I want that for my kids and it sucks not being able to give that to them. (Can you tell I don't like change?) I need to come to terms with and accept the fact that family birthday parties might not be reality at all in our future. Next year, I will make an effort to make a memory in another way even though we can't be where "I" want to be.
On the upside, I am finally getting close to finding a new grocery shopping routine. We are now members at COSTCO!! Woo Hoo! That is something to shout from the roof tops about. Especially when you are feeding three young boys that are already eating like mini teenagers. They have a reasonable selection of organic options and bulk items that I would normally buy weekly elsewhere. I also occasionally travel to a store called Sprouts that is about 30 minutes away, as well as a couple other grocery stores I cycle through depending on my plans for the week.
Landen started kindergarten at the end of August and he enjoys it a lot. I don't have to try very hard to get him up for school because he wants to go. He has even told me on a couple weekends that he wished it was a school day. He has made some good friends already, and through them I have met a few moms.
What I have been most excited about is the Mom's group that I have joined called, M.O.P's (Mom's Of Preschoolers). I have found that most of the women I have met there so far are transplants from somewhere else and have found M.O.P's as a place to connect with other mom's that are in the same stage of life as myself. We have only had a few meetings, and I enjoy it so much. Childcare is a perk for M.O.P's so that as a mother, you have a two hour stretch with out your child nagging you while you are trying to hold a conversation or listen to something. So, Nolan and Gavin attend their age appropriate classrooms while I am in the meeting and they look forward to it each time we go.
Throughout the past couple months, we have had family visiting a lot. Brian's brother and his girlfriend Ali came at the beginning of August. It was lovely to get to know Ali a little more and get to spend time with them! My parents came for a week long visit at the end of August while Brian was attending his conference in Germany. It was very helpful to have them here and wonderful to see them. Brian's mom and sister came out the end of September and over the weekend they were here we rode the bart into San Francisco to take in some sights. It was very nice to spend some time with them as well. As the two of them left, I dropped them off at the bart station and picked up my parents at the same stop. They were returning to watch the boys while Brian and I went to Hawaii for a week.
We went to Hawaii because Brian had a conference there. I was able to tag along thanks to my parents who helped out with the cost for me to go as well as watch the boys while we were gone. Because of the part of Hawaii we were in, it wasn't at all what I had expected, but it was still beautiful. I had a lush tropical vision of Hawaii in my head. The area of the big island we were on was not lush at all. It was a dessert of volcanic rock, and extremely hot. It was also extremely humid, but I loved every ounce of moisture in the air after enduring summer in the drought. The ocean was so beautiful. It was a color blue that I have never seen before. Just stunning. The resort we were in was very nice. It was so great to visit with friends from Notre Dame that were attending the conference as well. I spent my days by the adult pool. We were there for a week. I returned home with the best tan I have had since tanning beds in high school.
I would say that is a pretty good idea of what's been going on with us. The boys and I are finally settling in and adjusting to the surroundings. Brian will hopefully slow down on the traveling and be able to settle in a bit better soon. With that said though, we are beginning the job hunt again for Brian. Hiring in this field can be lengthy, so with his position here being 2-3 years, it's time to start looking. Who knows where life will take us next.
As usual...I hope to be more consistent with posts from here on out. Wish me luck or say a prayer.....I need it. I am QUEEN PROCRASTINATOR and have good intentions and thoughts of good posts fly through my head all the time.....and then I fail to write.