Not this or that, somewhere in between

Not this or that, somewhere in between

Every time I think I’m going to give up with this long long long standing blog, I come back. This is a long one, hold on.

Will it click this time, again? I don’t know. The last year and a half has been, well, large.  Purging a lot. A LOT. Packing up 10 years, moving all of us across the country, unpacking and arranging. Selling our house this time wasn’t as easy as it was the first time in Illinois.  If we’d priced it at the amount at which it sold (which we originally suggested), we would have been done much quicker. As much as I lamented and wanted that during the very long long process, several good things came out of it.

Em got a year longer at her wonderful school with the best teachers ever. Of all the things I miss about Fayetteville, and yes I do miss some things, that is the one I miss the most–along with her friends and their moms (and dads). That was /is (can it still be is?) one of the finest collections of folks I’ve ever been a part of.

Em got a year longer with her friends at a very important time. 4th and 5th grade sucked for the kiddo because of bullies and some horrid teachers and administration at her elementary school. Moving her to The New School was one of the best decisions we ever made. Even after we got flack for it.  Sixth through eighth were the best they could possibly be.  There was one kid (because isn’t there always) but it was excellent academically, it was safe, it was caring–really it was the closest I’ve ever felt in being a part of a school (and I’ve tried–part me/part not fitting in the PTO). She also had  more time with her gang of girls. Best kids ever–known some since the age of nearly 3 and some she met at TNS. Kind, smart, caring–just good kids with great parents. Can you tell I miss that?

I miss all this about Fayetteville and  I think because that was when I knew what to do. Plan sleepovers, take a group swimming, to the movie or the arcade. Make a pile of cookies and put together costumes. I knew the school system well (worked in it even).Now that she is in high school–well I don’t know what my place is. I’m trying not to hover and also to be involved. Do we always think the current stage of our kid’s life is the hardest? Because this–will all the attendant social situations, changing brains and bodies, academic navigation and future planning–THIS is the hardest.  She’s doing beyond amazing in most aspects too.  She is growing into a kind, thoughtful, ambitious adult. We are really proud and awed.

I guess moms always miss the time with their kids, when they were everything to each other.

I got more time with the people I care about and was able to do some good for people. Arrange things, fix things.

Next to last Halloween in Fayettevilee

We had THE MOST EPIC Halloweens. Perfect yard for making a graveyard. Perfect tree for hanging ghouls and giant spiderwebs. Sigh. Wonder what we’ll get up to here?

I learned SO much in that last 1.5 years of my job there. I have renewed faith I can learn just about anything in a short time after getting control of the ancient and very germanic Reddot. Yes–the only comprehensive manuals for that ancient release that I could find were in German.

If we’d sold the house any earlier than we did, we would not have this amazing place. It needs work (even more now since the ice storm) but it is just about ideal for our needs. All one level, except a little upstairs room for geeking or hanging out. A small kitchen that is arranged well with a breakfast area. Nice open living room with a fireplace. Wee dining room with built ins. Good sized master. “Office space” for all three of us. Enough bathrooms for Em to have her own (because OMG teenage girls).  I wish her room were bigger, but we’ll figure it out.  Oh man and the garage is HUGE with all the cupboards you could ever want. And almost NO yard (James hates yard work and neither of us garden successfully) but a wraparound deck (that is getting fixed 1/3 at a time). The neighborhood is mostly friendly and well established.  I still haven’t decorated everything or hung everything. We still have stuff in storage in AR. It isn’t the Addam’s family house we always wanted, but it is quirky and rapidly becoming home.

Em likes her school. I’m still working on that. The admin is VERY caring. She is meeting some great theatre kids. I already want to adopt them all. No really. It may be that it is a public school again or that it is high school. And probably that I feel like I know absolutely nothing about the school system here or how things work. I’m pushing myself to become more involved.

So far ALL our allergies are better.  We still have to go through a full Spring, but I’m hopeful.

Physically I feel better here than I ever did in Fayetteville. Less time sick. More hopeful. Less just weird. I know I’m not all that strange anymore, but still have tattoos (new ones too! and bright red hair) here I get complimented and smiled at for it. From ALL ages. People are friendlier here in my opinion. I’m friendlier here too. There is more of what J and I like (music, shows, festivals, etc) than we could ever find in Arkansas.  I’m looking forward to becoming a part of things here. I have read that altitude can effect mood–I know the further west I live the better I feel. This is the right place. It is so beautiful, so green. The sky is so wide. We live on the top of a hill and driving up to it or down to Em’s school every morning is breathtaking. And deer and turkeys wander through our yard!

It will take years for me to know my way around. I’m not the best driver in the world. But hey, that’s what GPS is for. And yearly eye exams.

Now I need to find a tribe. And never lose touch with the wonderful people back home. I do love Fayetteville, though it has never worked quite right for me.  I always felt out of sync. Like that Star Trek episode “Wink of an Eye.”  The hyper-accelerated Scalosions are invisible to the crew of the Enterprise who are living at 1/1000 the speed (or something) that they are.  I’m not saying I’m hyper-accelerated or that Fayetteville is slow objectively. It is the right speed for the people who love it. It’s the wrong speed for me.

I do not regret moving back. I learned a lot about my past, about making and keeping friends. I learned a lot about my family. Enough that I can stop trying to be anything other than the changeling. I got 10 years with some people I love very very much. I met new people who I love very very much. Emily grew up in a safe, quiet place where her Dad and I could walk her to school every day. She had the finest friends she could have. We had the best back yard a the time we needed one. I had some amazing birthday parties and dinners there and at our big red house. We have two kitties from there.  It was the right decision, just not the forever decision.

And J? He’s much happier here. He had maybe one friend in Fayetteville. He was more out of step than I was. Here he is working with lots of smart people and knows guys that speak his language. I let him tell his story though (for the most part).

It’s easier for me to be from there.  That’s really it. It is easier for me to be from there.