My oldest daughter, Leah, and her husband, Ryan, are moving. They are moving far, far away. 1,500 miles away in fact – to Tucson, Arizona.
We are so happy for them that they are getting to move for a great job opportunity. We are sad because it means that they will not be 20 minutes away where we could see them at a moment’s notice. Not that we ever saw them at a moment’s notice. They are far too busy for that.
In fact, we started a tradition, which has fallen by the wayside the past few months, of seeing each other the first Friday of each month. We actually had a standing date to see our kids because they are so busy.
Well, for awhile there we were busy too.
But, it was comforting knowing that they were close by. We never had to worry that they wouldn’t be around during the holidays or if we needed or wanted to see them for something.
We miss our second oldest daughter, Michelle, who lives in California. We don’t get out to California often. In fact, I’ve only seen her IN California once since she moved there 7 years ago. Usually she comes home for one of the Winter holidays, but we even missed that last year. She works in the hospitality industry, and holiday vacations are not easy to come by.
It is natural that as kids grow up, move away, and start families of their own that the traditions with their birth families change. That is as it should be, but I think it’s more of an adjustment for the parents than it is for the kids.
I remember how busy we were as young adults. Busy building careers. Busy with friends. Busy with a new spouse and new in-laws. Busy with young children and day care and sick kids and conferences and recitals and sports and on and on and on.
Busy making new traditions. New traditions that sometimes replaced old ones.
My daughter and her husband will be separated for a few months while she starts her new job and he finishes up the school year with his students. He’ll be here working and selling the house, and she will be there learning her new job.
I didn’t understand why she was making the move so quickly. Rather than giving herself a month, she was giving herself only a few weeks. A few weeks to get organized, packed, and moved. Of course, they are doing a double move – part now and part later. But, they have to figure out what to take now and what to take later. All while they are working full-time and leaving themselves only 2 weekends to get it all done.
Stressful. Especially for them.
This is how she described her decision to start this new job sooner rather than later, “Rip the Bandaid off quickly was how I was going to make it easier to leave my family and friends.” Rip the Bandaid off quickly. Her words exactly. Ouch.
I remember how I felt when Michelle drove away to go and live in California and try and get to know her birth mother. I felt like I was losing an arm. It was painful. But I knew I had to let her go.
Of course, Leah and Ryan are much older, and they make decisions without consulting us or getting our permission.
Rip the Bandaid off quickly. I always hated doing that. I always peeled them off slowly.