What do you do when your best friend tells you she is moving to London? Well first you squeal and become super excited… and then you cry… Although you try not to let her know, coz you are equal parts crazy excited/extremely jealous of her big adventure and completely devastated that life as you’ve known it got the last 19 years is about to change… But then when you’ve pulled yourself together… You go on much smaller adventure with her and your other best mates and you cross things off your list… ‘Cause that always makes things better… well it works for me anyway.
Weekends away with these ladies are becoming an almost annual tradition, and just getting out of town was enough to cross no. 12 off the list. To date though these weekends have all coincided with a large life event happening for one of us… so far there has been 2 wedding weekends and this one… which was our last road trip together before one of us goes on an even larger road trip for much longer.
The weekend included all the good girls weekends away essentials… manicures, movies, chocolate and cheese… and it also made me remember why I love these friends so so much. There is nothing better than actually being able to be yourself while you are away… these girls have seen me at my best and at my worst so there is actually no point pretending in between and it is an easy trip, no pretense, no expectations, just the four of us, The Mindy Project and some freezing cold weather (we did try and include Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt too, but much to my surprise… it didn’t fly! Who doesn’t love Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt?). And while it might be a decent amount of time before the four of us are able to hang out in the same place at the same time together for a whole weekend, it was nice to have done it now. Oh and we also ventured down in the rain to the local farmers market and crossed no. 93 off the list as well.
There are still a number of weeks before she actually leaves, and I am sure there will be more excitement and probably many more tears, but I also know that the distance won’t actually change anything. We are like a small gang, our book club even has it’s own set of membership rules and I am 100% convinced that the 17,000kms that will soon be between us, won’t actually feel that far. The miracle of the internet is something I am thanking the Lord for daily… and I am also praying that her next company has more wisdom and just gives her an iPhone and not another blackberry, FaceTime is the bomb. It also gives me a really good reason to keep pushing my “I need to go to Europe” holiday with Dave… because now I have a legit reason.
So this week it’s a month since we moved… and I wrote this blog a little while ago but hadn’t posted it for a whole variety of reasons (one being we haven’t had the internet at home… but that’s a blog in itself) but I thought that seeing as it has been a month and I am actually feeling much more settled that I was it might be a nice time to post it now that it is all done and dusted.
We have officially moved out, although there are still a few boxes to unpack at the new place, all of our stuff is out of the old place, everything has been cleaned, and I have checked that the door is locked for the last time. I have said my last goodbyes, and even though I miss it, and it’s super convenient location it doesn’t suck any where near as much as it did… In fact, I think I am slowly adjusting, and not having access to it as definitely helped.
The Saturday after we moved in we returned to the old place to clean and say a long goodbye, only to return on Sunday to complete the finishing touches… and then after church, just for good measure we had a macca’s dinner in the old TV room (minus the TV) one last time. I have been thinking a lot about why it has been so hard to say goodbye, and I know there is an element of me just not letting go, but part of me feels like the house holds many of the memories that without the prompts of the location, might be lost… we had been there 3 years together, but Dave had been there for many many more… starting way back at school with saxophone lessons and then moving into the house for what was going to be a short house sitting adventure. There have been some really important moments for both of us in that house, some happy, some sad, and while all of the memories are still there in my brain, it seems easier to recall them when reflecting in the room where they occurred. And while time has started to heal my heart and open my eyes to some pretty awesome things about the new place, I have certainly found closure in the fact that it is done… I can’t go back anymore, it’s not just sitting there waiting for me to return, it is now back in the hands of it’s owners… and even though I am talking about it like it has feelings and would be experiencing all this with me… I know it is just a house… and it doesn’t know if we are there or not. I do like to think that we showed it a good time though… So I have made a couple of lists to help me reflect and remember and save some of the memories from our time at Junction road.
5 Things (actual things, not just feeling things or emotional things… actual things you can touch!) I will miss about the house:
- It’s big backyard – it is actually huge, and it was really nice, a nice place to sit, to exercise and to look at.
- The Massive tree out the front – there is something quite magical about this tree, yes it was really annoying at times, and it often seemed to make you more wet as you walked under in the rain rather than shelter you, but it is beautiful, the colours, the size, it’s age… it is incredible.
- The toilet – I know this one is a little gross, but I will miss the toilet… 3 years in a house often means some significant toilet bonding time and if you don’t have a good toilet it can make some rocky times even more difficult.
- The open fire – who doesn’t love an open fire? No one… that’s who!
- My giant oven – the house had a massive oven, big enough for everything… I could have 4 massive roasting pans in there at once and still have room to spare… now I am going to have to work out how to do things on a smaller scale.
Honourable Mentions: The little green fence, it’s number ‘100’, the Island bench, the wooden blinds that let in beautiful morning sun and heating system that worked on a timer!
5 Things (actual things, not just feeling things or emotional things… actual things you can touch!) I am glad to say goodbye to, but will probably still deep down miss about the house:
- The back door – it never wanted to shut nicely, it always did shut, but sometimes it was a bit tricky
- The front door – ok so once, when I thought I had locked the door properly I pushed it just to check the lock had caught and it opened… it was locked… but it opened… It turns out that the door had warped a little with the weather and just needed a little adjusting… but this started a long term paranoia that it would just open… and so a lot of door checking followed from that day on.
- The unfinished bench – in the kitchen there is a patch of bench that is missing the laminate… I won’t miss that bit…
- Sharing my space – being a house sitting situation there were quite a few things left in the house that belong to the owners and while over time, some of these were stored elsewhere it still meant that I had to share some wardrobes and bookshelves and cupboards. Don’t get me wrong, having a furnished house that was already warmed and lived in was really nice, and I had more than enough rooms of my own things, but I am excited about the fact that the next house will only have our stuff in it and I will only have to share with Dave.
- The lights above the sink – the lights above the sink stopped working and it turned out that it was going to be a massive job to fix… so we decided that we didn’t really need them… but it will be nice to be able to see the dishes that are being washed.
Honourable Mentions: The gate on the side of the house that blew open and scratched my car, the piece of chip board covering the missing bits of wall on the outside of the house and the control panel for the heating that was just a little to high for me to read without standing on my tippy toes.
10 moments that happened in the house that I don’t want to forget.
- Christmas lights – I loved setting up our Christmas tree and lights at the house, not only because I love Christmas, but also because it was new and just ours and the lights around the mantle looked pretty awesome.
- The night we broke up – although it’s not a nice memory, it’s an important one and it happened in the house.
- Coming ‘home’ to the house after our honeymoon and realising that I lived there now too, it wasn’t Dave’s place anymore, but our place.
- BBQ Wednesday – these are the best and they all started at Dave’s place! Way to many people jammed around the table with meat and salad and drinks moving back and forth, sometimes outside, sometimes inside but always fun. At one time they even included a couch on the back step… ahh BBQ Wednesday!
- There are at least 3 of these, but I am lumping them all together, but the nights I went a little nuts… and brought back crazy amounts of stuff from 24hr K-mart or went running in the rain… they are both long stories, but still memories to keep.
- Making red meat casserole and cakes for Dave’s birthday… learning to be a bit wifey.
- Tuesday Morning Prayer – this was a really neat time in the house, meeting with some friends to pray together so a specific purpose and period of time. It was just nice to be able to offer our home for this and for those prayers to be answered the way they were.
- Dinner Parties – again there are a whole heap of these being lumped together, but this was the first time I got to through proper dinner parties, I couldn’t do it in Castlemaine because my little house was just too small, but it turns out I really like it. I like having people in the house, showing it off a little and cooking… I just love the whole thing and that was where it all started.
- Dave surprising me with my study – when I started my dip ed dave cleaned out the end room for me to use as a study, he put up the whiteboard, cleared the desk and had it all set up for me one night when I go home from work. It was such a nice surprise.
- One more lumped one, nights at home with just Dave, Dex and I and a movie in front of the open fire – they say it’s the simple things that are the nicest… and I think they are right. I know this is something we will have at the new house too (minus the fire place), but when I really look at what I loved most about that place it was the fact that we were both there, it was our space.
Honourable Mentions: So these didn’t happen in the house but they are just a few extras that I will miss… the fact that it is walking distance to one of the best cafes ever and that it was walking distance so some of my best friends places which meant lots of walking together (I know this won’t stop either, it just takes a little more planning now).
So there you go… Junction road… our time there has come to an end, and I am actually ok about that… As my school would tell me… it’s not good, it’s not bad, its just different. Different memories, different places, but the same people (maybe some new ones too along the way) and the same love… just housed differently.
I will still miss that house, and I know that at least for the next little while I will probably think of it often, but as I get more and more used to the new place, and make new memories there, I will also get more perspective and I know everything will be ok.
So a week later I am back at The Peddler, this isn’t where I thought I would end up today, and I am not sure it is good for my waistline or emotional state, but nevertheless I am here. And while I was trying to be fancy and just casually read a book as I sip on my tea and munch on my super late breakfast, my mind is running at one hundred miles an hour, and so what better way to process things by getting them out in the open. So instead, I am now sitting here typing… Back at the peddler reflecting on the past week and all that has happened.
A little while ago I wrote about my mixed feelings about moving, about how it turns out I actually really don’t cope well with change and how I was torn between wanting to stay in the familiar and being excited about this new adventure. Well now the move has happened… Quite smoothly I might add thanks to my overly organised colour coded packing spectacular. But it all happened quite quickly, and while we are headed back to our old place tomorrow to clean it so that it is ready for whatever it’s next chapter holds, I have really been struggling with the whole thing.
I know it takes time, and I just need to give it that, time to adjust, time to get used to driving from different places, time to find some familiar things, but right now I just feel so out of place, so far away and a little isolated. I should be enjoying setting up my new home, making it feel like us again, but I’m not… Not yet anyway! In my head I know it will get better, that I will adjust, that I will love it, but right now my heart is betraying me, and every time I drive through our old neighbour hood or even remotely near our old house, I get this overwhelming sense of ‘this is where I belong’ which then means when I am actually at my new home, my actual home, I feel dislodged and a little miserable.
There are moments when I get really excited about the new place, like on Monday when it was buzzing with the sounds of fun, and lots of people as Dave had a function there after work, or when I get to pick out new colours or features to display, when I get to plan my new home gym and what furniture I might like for the living area, but at the moment the longing to go back seems a little louder than the potential of the new place (especially when you through in a few unexpected joys like, unearthed electricity, a moving toilet and a missing phone line). And the truth is I’m not sure there is an answer to how to fix this feeling… Other than time, and I am sure I am not the only person who has felt like this before… But I just needed to let it out… To say that at the moment, I just really miss where I was… But that this too shall pass!
We are in… Well kind of… We have the keys and we have moved a few things, we have also changed a wet dog smell that seemed to permeate every inch if the house into a shampooed dog smell and now… Well hopefully a clean smell… But we are still working on it. And if I am honest I am feeling relieved that I am starting to get excited about the move, there are definitely still reservations and nerves, but there are some bits that I just want to get stuck into. I have big plans… Really big plans… There are so many possibilities… And I can at there very least put them all on my ever growing house wish list, because we have a house… And it’s really ours… I can walk around it and imagine new colours and furniture and rooms… And it’s exciting…
So this move is getting pretty close and over the past couple of weeks I have been trying my best not to be a hoarder. It turns out that it’s harder than I thought. I was really hoping this would be a great opportunity for me to let go, and in many ways it has been, but it has also made me realise how much stuff I have, which has no current purpose, yet I can’t bring myself to throw out.
So while it’s not ideal, my solution at the moment is to have some maybe boxes… Things that we are taking, but I need to go through again… And probably again and again. Just to give myself a few more chances to cull. Hopefully, slowly but surely the volume will decrease and I will be left with just what I really can’t throw away! But for now… I still have a lot of stuff! Wish me luck… And detachment!