I was four when my family moved to Colorado. We left our small town in North Dakota behind along with all I ever knew and the best friend I could imagine: Kate. She lived in my backyard. Well, our backyard was shared, no fences between them so we and my brothers’ best friends next door to her, and Ben next door to us, had one gigantic backyard that was really more like our own private playground.
I remember building snow forts deep in the snow in winter and swinging from the laundry t-post lines in the summer. And I remember all of us being friends. My brothers and all the neighbors. But Kate was my best friend.
I didn’t want to leave North Dakota and I didn’t understand why my parents were so eager to. My dad had been assigned there for six years, longer than most military assignments and it wasn’t exactly an ideal location. Colorado was wonderful compared to North Dakota, they said.
But I don’t have friends in Colorado.
I remember praying every night with my dad that I would make friends. I was desperate for friends.
Now, we’re just beginning to feel connected here in San Diego, three years later, and we’re getting ready to start over.
Let me rewind.
We found out last fall that James’ mom planned to sell the house we’re living in as soon as spring came or as soon as possible. The same week we found out our church was headed for some major transitions. Then, in October, James hurt his back pretty good. Too good. He hasn’t been able to be on his feet at work which makes him disabled. I was overwhelmed in my position at work and having a hard time keeping up at home and leaving Noah all day.
It was the perfect storm. We both started searching for new work all over San Diego, but then we were also searching for a new place to live and considering looking for a new church and in the midst of it all, just wishing for family support. When we found out one of my brothers was looking into moving back to Colorado it all started connecting.
We officially decided just before Christmas to move back to Colorado Springs.
It’s outrageously sad to be leaving San Diego. This place will always hold my heart.
I’m outrageously happy to be near my family again.
Both-and. This is what life is, the good and the bad at the same moment.
I’m also feeling like a little girl. I’m four years old all over again. Wondering what’s to come, what it will be like.
There was a time in my life I got so good at being a friend because I was desperate for them. Then there was a time I gave up being a friend, because even though I was a good friend, I still felt alone. I hope, as we come back into Colorado I can find a balance between being the perfect friend and the one who’s given up and just show up as I am and that others can do the same. I’m so over perfect.
I’m grateful to have J and N with me this time and the family that’s already there.
Here’s to you, 2017.