Sunday, March 6, 2011

We are moving 1600 miles away. Recently, I realized that I have spent the first 30 years of my life in one spot with brief, months-long excursions to other places. All my memories, good and bad, are in this one city. Today, I am reminded of friends I haven’t talked to in years and people to whom I never apologized. This is where I was born, where I grew up, where I met God and where I met my husband. We were married here and spent the first 18 months of our marriage here.

Being the literary person that I am, I think of my life in chapters. But this feels more like the end of a children’s book and the beginning of a novel. I am moving on to a more complicated story with more advanced vocabulary and a more complex plot. I feel we are starting fresh, heading out to begin our story, a new and completely different story. There may be side stories and brief segues but through it all, we will have each other. As I look around my apartment in various stages of being packed, I think of all the chapters I am closing. It is sad in a nostalgic sense, but in another, it’s exciting to think about all the new beginnings we are about to embark on. It does me no good to dwell on the “has been” or “could have been.” I need to set my eyes forward and look to what God has planned for us. I am so thankful I will not be alone in this but will be standing beside a man of God who is a great leader.

As part of the packing process, I have had to go through several years of mementoes and papers. I have found old letters from friends and crushes. I have found things given to me by smitten boys and people who are now gone. As I have found most of them, I have savored the memories associated with them, maybe shed a tear or two, sat quietly in remembrance…and then either thrown them away or put them in a box to give away. One of the things I have learned in the last year is that there are two relationships in my life that are more important than any others. First, and foremost, is my relationship with my God. Second, only by a little, is my relationship with my husband. If something is not beneficial for either relationship, it has no place in my life.

I have also found some of the notes and letters my husband and I have exchanged in the two years we have been together. I have gathered them all together and they will have a special place in my suitcase, reminders of how far we have come and how far we have yet to go. These are things I will cherish for a long time to come.

It is a little scary for this homegrown Texan to leave the comfort of home, but I am aware that I have done all the growing here that I can. It is time for me to move on and begin yet another new adventure, this time with my love and my best friend. Thanks for reading.