Like, it's hard to complimentarily (look I made up a word) ask someone if they've lost weight, because no matter how you do it somehow it always sounds like you thought they looked like an obese freak before. And sometimes that sucks, because you're really trying to say, "You look really awesome, great job!"
But I feel like it must sound like, "You look great, thank God...you looked hideous before."
I find you just can't win with that one.
(Maybe it's just in my mind. I never over think things.)
Similarly, it is extremely difficult to tell people that you love, people that you are close to that you're moving. No matter how you do it somehow it seems to sound like, "We're getting the hell outta Dodge! It sucks ass here and your friendship wasn't enough to make us stay. Deuces."
When what you really want to say is, "We've made a really difficult decision to relocate so that we can be closer to our families, and so that the kids can grow up close to their grandparents and aunts and uncles."
And your friends are really supportive, but what you think they're really thinking is:
It's been twelve years since I've lived in the city I grew up in. All of my memories of that place are in the context of a completely different time in my life: High School. So, obviously I'm feeling a small bit of trepidation as to how it will feel living there again.
In full-on adult mode.
This time I won't be trying to sneak downtown and scoop the loop with my friends. I'll be taking my kids to preschool and racing to find a bathroom at the zoo while my son poops in his Cars undies.
There are people I really didn't know when I did live at home, but now feel as though I do know them because I've seen pictures of their weddings and the births of their children. Are we really friends?
If I see them in the grocery store do I say hi, ask about the kids I've never met and seem like a total creeper?
(Speaking of grocery stores, I'm sad to leave a state in which the grocery store chain is called Harris Teeter. "The Teet" "Harry Teets" "The Tit". Telling Michael I'm running to the store will never be as much fun again. Sad face.)
And then, unfortunately. there are those very, very few people that you did know like 1000 years ago, but since 2004 and the advent of the 'status update' you are totally comfortable being 1600 miles away from.
I can't be the only one that has suffered these feelings at the hands of Facebook.
Tell me I'm not the only one.
And in the inevitable event that I run into them it'll be like:
This is new territory for me, and embarrassingly, these are the things that keep me up at night. That and a host of other terrible made up scenarios.
In all seriousness, making these decisions has been awful. We are elated. And we are devastated.
It would be so easy if we hated it here. But we don't hate it here.
We chose to start a life together in North Carolina. We became a family in North Carolina. We were amazingly blessed to have been welcomed by people that made us Yankees feel like we belonged here. People that made us feel like family. Michael was incredibly lucky to have been united with a group here that is beyond wonderful; they too have shared in all of our joy from day one. Deciding to leave his practice here was the most agonizing decision of our married life. Not for one moment have we ever taken for granted the love and support everyone here has shown us. We will miss everyone so much. So much.
And here's where it gets hard for me.
Sometimes in life the trees seem really dense and it is tough to see the path God wants you on,
And you feel a little lost.
Thankfully I found my way here, and I am truly sad to leave the community of people that made me feel like I wasn't lost anymore.
I wish I could explain just what they mean to me. But I can't. I can't come up with the words that do my heart justice.
When I go to work I am surrounded by women that inspire me. They are fearless. They are so brave. I watch them work and I feel like I will never be what they are. They are the smartest, most compassionate, most incredible people. Their hands are skilled and gentle, and in the face of what seems like chaos they come together as a team in the most beautiful way. It looks choreographed; you wouldn't ever know they were struggling to save a life. They make it look effortless and easy. They aren't scared, and I'm terrified nearly every day. They always have the answers, and I always have the questions.
Instinct would have anyone do this job with a closed heart. With armor, to protect themselves from the things they see. But everyday their hearts are open. More days than not they are called to do a job that requires a level of focus, concentration and composure that is exhausting. I have seen them come in on their days off to say goodbye. And I have seen them come in on their days off to celebrate tiny victories. When I feel like I would have crumbled under the immense pressure a thousand times, their courage never fails. They have hope when a situation feels hopeless, and they have humor when days feel really, really dark. They have comforted me when I've cried and shared wisdom when my heart was hurting. They are my mentors, they are my teachers, and I feel so incredibly lucky to call them friends. They are my heroes.
I'm ecstatic to have been welcomed by another great children's hospital; I don't doubt I will make new friends, but I will never forget the old. One is silver and the other's gold. :)
Flannery O'Connor wrote, "I write because I don't know what I think until I read what I say."
I'm nervous to move. I'm scared to start over in a place that should feel like home, but may not feel like home for a while. I'm sad to move the kids from the only home they've ever known.
But. I don't feel like we could ever make the wrong decision by choosing family. So we chose our families.
My dad can teach Henry and Addie about cars and Michael's dad can teach them how to fish. Adeline's aunts can teach her how to accessorize, and that no matter what anyone says you can never have too many pairs of boots.
And in the midst of all this family. I'll be able to do something amazing.
Just kidding. Kind of.
Soon we will say goodbye to North Carolina and hello to Iowa to start a new chapter in our lives. We just wanted everyone here to know how much they have meant to us.
I'll leave it at that before I start quoting the lyrics to Jason Aldean's 'Fly Over States'.
Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone for making it so easy to fall in love with North Carolina.
And to our friends and family at home, we can't wait.