So, it’s just occurred to me that I’m going through transition. I know, doh. Due to my impending nuptials, I’m planning on moving house in the next three months.
I suppose it snuck up on me. I mean, I’ve done house moves. I’ve moved between countries and between cultures as a Third Culture Kid; I’ve moved as a student, as a newly wedded wife, as a new mum, as a divorcee. They’ve been routine, life-changing, hard work, and significant life events. So how did this one sneak up on me?
Because this time, I’m only moving down the road. Because this time, I’m moving into someone else‘s home. Because this time, I’m familiar with the new home in question, as it’s the home of my fiance and I already spend time there. So what’s the big deal?
Well, this home I’m currently living in is the homiest home I’ve ever had. It’s all mine. It’s only ever been shared with my daughter (aside from the many friends that have stayed over the years) and it was furnished and filled with us exclusively in mind. This home was our sanctuary post-divorce. Also, the longest I’ve ever stayed in one place consecutively is in this home. So maybe it’s actually a bigger deal than I’ve been letting on to myself.
But what do I do with that? What does acknowledging that it’s a big deal do for me?
It keeps me grounded in the real.
My feelings are data. There are no good or bad feelings, although some are more pleasant to experience than others. As such, my feelings are signals, responses to the various experiences my life offers me. And if moving home is indeed a significant experience, my feelings suddenly make much more sense. I can take them seriously in the data they are providing.
My mixed emotions, my easy tears, my increased desire to ‘nest’ and joy in the little corners of my home make sense as my mind acknowledges a time limit on opportunities to appreciate this corner of my world. Rather than confusing me, my feelings reflect a reality that my senses are experiencing. And it matters to me that my feelings make sense.
It allows me grace.
If my feelings, both the excited and scrunched up varieties, make sense, then it follows that I can have a little more patience with myself. We all know the frustration of feelings that don’t seem to align with reality… the anger that surges disproportionate to the slight received, the relief at a social event cancelled that we feel we should have wanted to attend, the hurt felt at the hand of a friend or partner when our mind tells us we are over-reacting for the hurt was not meant…
I can allow myself grief, because I can acknowledge the reality of the loss.
I can allow myself gratitude, because my partner is so thoughtful in making his home mine too.
I can allow myself nostalgia, because memories remind us of our blessings.
I can have grace with my feelings, both the pleasant and the inconvient. I can accept them, and give them space to be, because they are making sense of the world around me.
I can approach transition thoughtfully.
Because it is dawning on me that my future house move is a big deal, I can make room (emotionally and logistically) for its big-ness. I can draw up charts, map out plans, and plan in for the sheer time it will take to pack things up. I can plan a ‘please help me to pack up my home’ party, because having friends in my home matters to me, and will offer me continuity through transition. I can take time to write and journal about the process, and what it means to me. I can remember that it will take time for my new home to settle to my presence, and that’s okay. And more… I can invest in my Self throughout so that I won’t feel completely homeless in the midst of transition, retaining instead a sense of my own Settledness.
What about you? Have you got a big deal looming that you haven’t felt able to say out loud? What big deal are you minimizing in your own story? What would acknowledging the big-ness of it do for you?
Perhaps you would like support in the voicing of this chapter of your story. Get in touch with me here, and I’d be honoured to walk with you in the next steps of your story.
Next week I will talk more about preparing for on-coming transition, and how we can moving beyond bracing ourself to looking forward with hopeful anticipation. Join me for the journey!
Dr. Rachel, it puts me in mind of the ancient proverb, “Physician, heal thyself.” Which, it seems, you are indeed doing. Several huge adaptations coming your way, traveling together. Moving out from your beloved, customized nest and the commitment of marriage . . . either of those (never mind simultaneously) would make me stagger, it seems, as I contemplate the thought. More power to you, and bless you as you move into these significant changes. We wish you well (I’m thinking that I speak for many others).
Thank you Dan! All blessings very welcome, and thank you for reading! 🙂
I’m so glad you’ve been able to recognise how big this is… I feel nervous for you transitioning from your home to another and I’m not the one doing it!! Even when a move is positive, it is still a big deal.
Call on me any time you need help packing things up xx
Thank you! It’s amazing how acknowledging the big-ness of something seems to make it immediately more okay that it’s daunting! And I’ll be taking you up on that offer!
It is good to recognise your feelings and accept that the life changing move is really a big deal. Take things at your pace, remember to breath and embrace the loving family you are part of. I have moved around 36 times from my parents to my present home and each and every move presented challenges. Some times I felt I would never settle, but I have been in my present home for nearly 10 years, the longest stay. I may move again in the future and look upon it as a challenge and change of scene. Every day we are changing, adapting and enjoying life, our family and friends. Make your next home a bigger nest for you all and be cosy together. Love to you all.
Thank you Evelyn – wise words! Both settling and change bring their own challenges – and joys 🙂 Looking forward to a new kind of nest!