My husband and I recently made the insane decision to pick up and move our entire family across country. I say recently, but that’s not really the truth. It only happened recently.
We started thinking about it around the time Amelie had been home from Ethiopia for about 9 months and I was 6 months pregnant with Brayson. In a massive snowstorm in Colorado. And we lived on top of a mountain. And my husband was out of town for work. And we lost power. And I had no way to snowblow our driveway because the snowblower was too heavy for me to move out of the shed without help while pregnant.
So, suddenly moving back to the (Cold! Dark! Icy!) state we grew up in didn’t seem like such a preposterous idea. The upsides were this–much cheaper to live in Upstate NY than in the mountains in Colorado, our jobs would remain the same, free babysitters, no more guilt about everyone having to come visit us, no more mandatory cross-country flights with little kids, vacations to somewhere other than Upstate NY, free babysitters, our kids growing up with the physical and mental closeness to their family we had, the ability to go to Ethiopia to do volunteer work because of the proximity of free babysitters, date nights with my husband, warm water you can actually swim in and free babysitters.
My husband began the process of trying to get transferred within his company, and after approximately 150,000 situations where we thought it was going to happen and then it didn’t, I bought a plane ticket to Ethiopia for me and a plane ticket to Denver for my father in law who is retired. And who happens to be a free babysitter. If we couldn’t make the move work, then we couldn’t make the move work, but I wasn’t holding out on this trip to Ethiopia any longer. Guess what happened the next week?
My husband’s job transfer went through. At first we decided to wait until after the holidays to move. But then that meant moving from Colorado in the winter to drive across country in the winter to move into a new place in NY in the winter. None of which sounded particularly appealing. Then we decided to move after Art for Ethiopia. But we had already bought plane tickets to NY for Halloween, so at the end of the day we just decided to move at that time–pack the moving truck, fly to NY with the kids as planned for Halloween, leave them with the free babysitters named Grandma and Grandpa, fly back to Colorado, pick up the dogs from the kennel, drive across country, unload the moving truck into a smaller moving van, move into our new house, pick up the kids.
Sounds fun, no? Oh, but it gets better. Because while we were packing the moving truck in Colorado, we got 3 feet of snow. Just close your eyes and imagine for a moment packing a tractor trailer full of all your belongings–just you and your spouse–while you try to keep your 3 year old and your 18 month old from losing their minds from boredom. Now add 3 feet of snow and (!!!) a power outtage. And a school closure for the 3 year old. It was just as delightful as you are imagining it to be.
But we made it. And we’re all moved in and unpacked and decorated. And my kids see their Grandparents and Uncle every Saturday (we rotate whose house we watch football at and have dinner), Grandpa babysits them (for free!!) every Monday, we get together for burritos on Tuesdays with their cousin, Friday night is pizza night with Uncle Brendan, and for the first time in 10 years, we spent Thanksgiving together.
Totally worth the drama.