SO I haven’t written anything in FAR too long and Ive been aching to. So here it is… so long overdue.
This Journey has been a wild and crazy one with some ups and some downs and a few sideways spirals just for good measure. My patience, strength, endurance and courage has all been tested to the extreme. This was a path I never truly imagined would ever unfold and yet here we are now staring at snow capped mountains as the sun sets in the evening and filling our days with hiking, exploration and new friends. We’re building a new life here in Colorado.
I almost didnt think I would survive the road trip here. We drove through sand storms, rain, lightening, snow and lightening, pitch black darkness and a few scary middle-of-nowhere roads, but we made it! We finally arrived to our new home with a warm kitchen full of food and snacks, a nice meal waiting for us and friendly neighbors waiting anxiously to play in their ‘snow fort’ together. Although we were sleeping on the floor in the living room with a lantern, sleeping bags and a few small pillows… we were home.
The following weeks were filled with furniture shopping. Oddly enough it wasnt as fun as I had imagined it to be. Trying to make sure I picked the right pieces that would fit but also look nice and be something my husband would enjoy when he finally would get a chance to see it all was overwhelming to me. We agreed to go one room at a time so that made things a bit easier, but man it was exhausting. (I am still not done yet, we have a guest bedroom, office and library still to furnish)
Then came the drama and excitement of getting our giant trailer delivered and unloaded. When it arrived I was so excited to see all our stuff finally here. We lost a few items, but nothing that cant be replaced or forgotten. I am so thankful we were able to pack everything that we did. I still feel like I might have left behind a few things that I really wanted, but I cant do anything about that now. I can only move forward with what we do have. THe kids were SO happy to see their toys and their belongings come off the truck and were eager to start unpacking them. We were pleasantly surprised by my husband being able to come home for a day to help us unload the truck and see the house for the first time. We also were blessed by complete strangers (one of them was a studen of my mom’s and he brought a friend) who willingly came and helped us unload our trailer. These two young men were so helpful and I was so thankful that my husband and uncle weren’t going to have to do it all alone. IT felt great to have so much support from family and friends.
We have spent the following weeks unpacking, decorating, hiking, exploring, field tripping, learning, swimming and dancing at the YMCA, meeting new friends, reconnecting with old ones,homeschooling and visiting with family. It has been such a wonderful peaceful feeling creating a new life here. I asolutely love all the possibilities we have for our future. I love the friends we’ve made. I love having family close by that actually wants to spend time together. I love that everything is so close here. We want to go hiking in the mountains… 1o minutes. we want to go to the YMCA 3 minutes. Grocery store 2minutes. DMV thats suprisingly speedy… 2minutes. Target, Lowes, shoping centers and a mall…. 5 minutes. Downtown city life…. 15/20 minutes. Everything is so close in any direction, we spend less time sitting in a car and more time exploring together as a family.
We miss having our family complete as usual, BUT living here has given us the opportunity to visit Eric multiple times. He rarely gets anytime off and when he does its not enough time for him to actually drive home, so for us to actually have the freedom to pack up and leave for the weekend (or week) to go see him has been wonderful. For the first time in six years, maybe even more than that… we do NOT have someone else to take care of, feed, check on and stay home for. We do not have a farm to care for and the struggles of having to find someone to take care of all the animals so we can leave for a short trip. Our flexibility with homeschool allows us to travel mid week if we wanted. These changes have been such a wonderful blessing for our family. ALthough it has been a little harder saying goodbye each time, the kids and I have loved all the extra time we get to spend with their Daddy.
As each day passes and we settle in a bit more to this new life, I feel my old one slipping away. I mean, I knew we were starting over. I knew I was leaving behind a lot of things (and people) back in California… but I had accepted it. What I wasnt prepared for was feeling so disconnected and lost once I realized I no longer have ties to CLarence Levi French and Jean Ruth (Sprague) French who raised me. My grandma treated me like crap my entire life, but she still is the ONLY reason I grew up loving animals and farming. She is the reason I can and will drop everything to get outside and be in nature and feel at peace instantly. She taught me to swim, as well as most of the city of Carlsbad lol. She inspired me to garden and learn to actually grow things rather than kill them. My grandfather …. I dont have enough space, or the right words to truly capture how permanently he has impacted my life. I wish I could give him one more hug, hear his laugh again and see that happy smile of his whenever he watched Peytne play at his feet.
EVERY step of this move, this journey they have both been in the back of my mind. I am constantly catching myself thinking “I should call grandma, she would want to hear about how Kaelob’s swimming lesson went” Or “I should send Pop a picture from this hike, or museum we went to, he would lOve to hear all about it.” I have brought little pieces of each of them with me. I made sure of that. I have their pictures up. I feel like they would be proud of me, but I wasnt expecting to miss them both as much. WHen my grandmother was alive she still told his stories, and talked about their family, their life growing up… their lives raising my father and unlces or life raising my brother and I. SO many stories . Generations of memories and right now I feel like Ive lost them all. These are stories my children should have been able to hear, but now they are gone. My grandparents represented all that I was. Who I came from, Where I came from… my past.
I know they would be SO proud of seeing what we’ve done with what theyve given us and how we are making a new life… That place was my home. Despite our problems, they were my family. That home held all my memories that I dreamed of sharing with my children as they played in the same field, or in the same big eucalyptus tree. Creating new memories and a new life is wonderful and exciting, but saying goodbye to the old one is hard, no matter how much you know its the right thing to do.
I will always be the sand crab beach loving farmer girl, but so long as I cant get to the beach and don’t have a farm I will feel like a little something is missing. Maybe one day I will look back and realize somewhere along the road I have evolved into someone else…. but today, this sand crab beach loving farmer girl feels a bit homesick.
Now, that being said… the rational side of me can see the incredible blessing this move has been and how happy our family is in this new space together. It is a funny thing to feel homesick yet also be excited about all the new changes. I know whatever the future holds will be amazing, but adjusting to this new me will definitely take some time…. time that I am happy to have now. 🙂