04 January 2010

New Year, new location...

Someone once said, "You can't go home again." And someone responded with, "Home is the place where they always have to take you back." So, who was right?

My husband and I recently moved across the country. Since I'm not taking classes anymore, and he received a job offer that was exponentially more lucrative than the dried beans they pay in graduate school, we packed up everything and moved. He moved before I did, as I was teaching and taking classes and needed to be in the Midwest long enough to experience the first snow day in university since I've been there (and much before, as well, actually).  When he moved, he moved in with my parents for a number of reasons: because they live closer to his new jobs than his parents; I didn't want him to rent an apartment without me there; I thought that saving that first month's worth of paychecks would be a good idea, since I didn't know what my job situation would be when I moved out west.

We spent a day last week looking at apartments, and found one that we really liked, that was in our price range and was even closer to his work and therefore wouldn't involve living with my parents any longer than necessary. We were thinking about moving in late January / early February. Two days later he springs on me the idea to just save up money and live with my parents. A lot of people are doing this these days. One of the people showing us apartments was doing this, even, with his wife and infant.

I'm trying to make it as different from the last time I lived here (10 years ago) as possible, but it is really challenging, because there is so much past in this place. I'm trying to make space for the present - writing, researching, being not-just-your-daughter-anymore - but I can't seem to get through to the other side. I'm attempting to make something that resembles a workspace, but am finding that every place I sit to work makes me feel like a teenager again.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to sound ungrateful. I'm very lucky that my parents have the space for us, that they are willing to let us live here and are enthusiastic about letting us make as many changes as is necessary for it to work for us. But I think that the dueling quotes about home are only accurate when they are taken together. You can return to your home, to the place where you grew up, and be welcomed back with open arms. At the same time, however, you can't expect to be able to completely break from the past. Nothing has changed, really, except for me. And it's changed a lot.

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