Mourning the Life I Have to Leave Behind


12 days. That’s all the time I have left here in Nashville. The movers arrive in 8 days, so the hours I’m not at work will be spent preparing for yet another big change. It’s PCS season (Permanent Change of Station) for those who don’t speak the military lingo. “Permanent”. Ha! The longest I’ve lived in one place is three years, and that was five moves ago.

Everyone keeps asking me “are you excited about your move?” The short answer: NO. I’m anxious – I have a million things to do and very little control over anything about my destination.

In 12 days, my husband and I will drive halfway across the country with two children and a cat. We don’t have a home yet – and might not until weeks after our arrival. Hotel living – here we come!

Attempts to explain this crazy world I live in sound just that, crazy. I’ve been married to the Army for 12 years– I’ve gotten very good at moving. But this one seems to be hitting me hardest. It’s not that I’m stressed (whether I prepare or not, my stuff will get packed and loaded onto a truck and then unloaded into a structure with a roof, rooms and a kitchen… preparation just ensures I’m not unpacking house plants and trash cans filled with trash). I just don’t want to leave.

I can see my future here. I can imagine walking my son to his first day of kindergarten at the elementary school around the corner. I can see the little boy down the street someday picking my daughter up in his truck… and I would be okay with that! (his parents are awesome)…

I love my life here. I have a neighborhood out of a Martha Stewart magazine: we have block parties, celebrate New Years Eve together with progressive dinner parties, and St. Patrick’s Day might have involved beer pong.  I have a job that fulfills me and gives me the opportunity to help others lead healthier lives. My best friend lives 3 doors down… our kids are the same age… we really could grow up together.

Except we can’t.

So no, I’m not excited about this move. Beyond the drudgery of taking down curtains and spackling nail holes — I’m not excited to leave this life that I love. In the midst of sorting through all my worldly possessions, I am mourning the life I have to leave behind. We’re coming up on the “lasts”… last day at work… last day at school… last scoop of ice cream at Jeni’s… last cup of coffee with my friend… last play in the park… last run through Hillsboro…

I’m sad. I’m nostalgic. I’m exhausted from shredding old utility bills and bank statements.

And I’ve done this enough to know it will be okay. I will be okay. There will be another neighborhood, another ice cream shop, another great running loop, another job. My kids will make friends. I will make friends.

It won’t be THIS life, but it will be good. I will make it good. But I can still be sad about the life I’m leaving behind…



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here