It's been while. I've needed to write, but haven't been able. There has been so much. Some of which I couldn't share right away, some of which I was processing and trying to rebound from, and amongst all the "much" being a mom has been my priority.
We have big news. We are moving. Just a few hours away from where we live now, but that's a few hours from dear friends, and with that is the comfort of a home and a community where we planted deep roots. Right now we live just a few miles from where Koen is buried, he's nestled in the trees just like our backyard. I go there often, not as much as I used to, but it is my place. It's my place, because it's Koen's only place. Logically I understand that his sweet little soul is no longer there, but its the last place we touched the tiniest little casket he was buried in, where we said our final goodbyes, the grass there has been watered by my tears, where I have laid my head on his stone trying to get as close as I possibly could. I won't be able to go there in the evening, or swing by while Tobin is napping in the car and Hackett is at school. I will have to leave him. Kevin and I were so torn when we lived in California about growing our family, and made the decision to wait. After we lost Koen, I thought, this is why. It would have been so hard to endure what we did thousands of miles away from our family, and I have been so grateful that our little family would always reside just a few miles from Koen, and was always thankful that he wasn't buried in California - so far away from us. It was our plan to stay here, but life happens and you realize must walk by faith. I am getting closer to learning that I am not in control, but goodness it's not easy.
So over the last month we have been preparing for the possibilty of this move, and now its happening. Really happening. Realtors are coming to see our house early next week, tomorrow we go in search of a new home, on Monday Hackett goes to look at his new school. It's real. And its exhausting. The painting, purging, organizing is hard work, and with a toddler and a 9-year-old playing baseball and Kevin coaching, even harder. But what is so exhausting for me is the emotions I am feeling. I don't like change. No, don't like isn't a strong enough word, hate change is probably far more accurate. And I make strong emotional connections to things, I struggled getting a new car, so a new house is much more traumatic. Especially after all this house has seen. We are preparing to purchase our fourth home in eleven years - that number is staggering to me - and this house has by far held more tears than our other two houses combined. Kevin has never really loved this house, and I wonder if that's why. This house is too sad for him. Hackett and Tobin will live in multiple homes while growing up with us, but this is Koen's only house. Just this one. A room in the house that was ready for him, but that he never slept in, will be his only room. Hackett and Tobin will make so many memories in our new home, but the new home won't hold any memories of Koen for me, like this house does.
I think I am in shock about leaving our dear friends here, it hasn't fully hit me what we are walking away from. Amazing people who fill our lives with so much laughter, but have also been there to wipe up our tears, and fill in the gaps during these tough years in our life. They will remain such important people in our lives, but we are moving away from the convenience of fun impromptu night with our kids. I will miss them more than words can even begin to express. What I have learned in our constant string of moves is that distance changes friendships, but the true ones stand the test of time. I am in almost daily communication with many of my friends from California, and I find comfort in peace on knowing it will be the same with these friends.
It's exhausting being a mom. It is. Stay at home or working, its exhausting. I think one reason is the amount of emotional energy you pour in to your kids. They need so much of you. My Hackett. This news has not been easy, he's needed his mom and lots of reassurance, but he's handling it. Handling the initial shock, sharing with his friends, even handling a boy who has been mean (telling others that he's happy Hackett is moving), and also seeing his dear friends who are saddened by his news. The weight of it all weighs heavy on me. As we prepare him for all that is coming. We know how hard moves are, we know that it gets worse before it gets better, but this is life, one cannot be rescued from it as bad as we would like to. This experience has already given him the opportunity to display his grave and maturity, and in the end it will give him the confidence to know that he can do this, he can handle hard and yucky and messy, and then come
Out the other side better for it. In this next year Hackett will learn first hand the power in this promise:
"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
Tobin has felt the stress and life has been more frustrating for him as a result, and that takes energy and patience too. Which isn't easy, when you feel like you are all out, but we are making it! Kevin has been working so hard juggling it all, and I appreciate it so much. I feel like being a good wife at this stage in transition means handling it, dealing without flipping, finding the peace and the happy. This blog is my place to dump my emotions, I have cried constantly while typing today, but that doesn't mean there is only sadness with this move. There is happy, there is such peace that cannot be explained, there is excitement. Even though I don't like change, I have learned to embrace the adventure of moves, and with each move we've gotten better at adapting and integrating ourselves into our new communities, and I look forward to doing that again. We will make a new home, and it will be filled with love, laughter, and tears, but I pray not as many tears as this house has held.
(We started saying goodbyes this week as this is our last year with Southtown Little League.)
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I am Jackie.