Divine Secrets of the Moving Mom Sisterhood: Getting attached or staying neutral?
Recently I’ve been thinking about an impending move to a city 11 hours away. We can say, our current town has easily been one of our favorite locations. We love the size, the amenities it offers, the location, and the people. In fact, we’ve made more local friends here than in any other town we’ve lived in. We really couldn’t have asked for a better experience.
But… guess what? That makes the idea of moving away hard. No, not just hard… downright painful. But this isn’t my first experience with this feeling. Even in towns we haven’t loved as much as our current location, I always find it so hard to pick up and leave. And I think I’ve figured out why… I can’t keep myself detached when it comes to where I live. I always want to immerse myself in a town, whether that’s by finding a job, getting involved in church or organizations and making connections and friendships with locals. And for the time we live in a town, it’s amazing! I feel sort of “normal” and not like a weird, transitory gypsy. But… when it comes time to leave, I’m left wondering… was it even worth it?
Are all the good, positive feelings and experiences worthless because it all just gets ripped away when you move onto the next location? Should you even bother getting attached or would it just be a whole lot easier to remain detached?
For a lot of people, I’m sure it looks easier. It’s safer to hold life and others at an arms-length distance. It doesn’t mean you don’t enjoy a location you live in, but you just choose not to buy in or make it “home.” You are friendly and kind and even make friends, but you don’t truly let them in on your life because you are afraid they won’t want to really get to know you if you aren’t permanent. And if things don’t go great, instead of trying to fix it, you just say “well… we won’t be here long anyway!” Anybody guilty of this? (I know I am!)
But, instead of thinking about the end result being a move and leaving your current life all behind, why not live in the moment the life that you have and enjoy it? Yes, it hurts some in the end and you have to deal with not just your and your whole family’s emotions, but you were real. You make real connections with people that you can have for the rest of your life, you find new hobbies or interests and you explore and learn about new cities and areas to find out what you really like.
Even with picking up and moving away 4 times so far, I’ve never regretted living in the moment. I’ve never regretted making each of our cities our homes and making friends that feel like part of our family. We’ve cheered for the home teams, immersed ourselves in the local cultures and given time and energy to local causes. And I’m not going to lie. My husband has witnessed many a tear-filled car ride away from cities as I try to deal with the last goodbyes, but I’m so thankful for every one of them. Because it means that we care deeply for people we met there and that they care about us. It means we lived real life.
So… what do you do? Do you buy in and attach yourself to each place you move? Or do you prefer to make it easier in the end and stay as removed as possible?