This weekend we travelled back to the familiar. I reflected on our drive down that I was never allowed to grieve over moving. The weekend we left Oregon, we celebrated LB’s second birthday, stayed up until 1AM cleaning the old house, got up at 7AM on Sunday and drove the remaining things to our new, tiny townhouse. On the way out of town, we pulled in to the doctors to get the second blood draw confirming the pregnancy and check the HCG doubling (being only 6 weeks out of a miscarriage, we watched the levels early on). With so much to be excited about and so many things changing at one time, I never had a chance to say good-bye. It felt like another of our weekend trips. Only one day, we didn’t drive back. I never considered how much this effected me.
As much as I snark on Oregon for their completely effed up politics, their lack of actual bonafied mountains, and the inability to let you pump your own gas, the place became home to me. I’ve lived a lot of places in my thirty years. But in the six years I lived in Oregon, we lived in three towns as many as 60 miles apart, and still we somehow made a home when I wasn’t looking. Somehow I liked the place I swore I wouldn’t stay. At some point, we made really good friends, found a place to raise our daughter, got used to waiting ten years for the old man to pump our gas. Somewhere along the way, we got comfortable.
I made a somewhat quick decision to go back this weekend. LB asks, almost daily, to see her friend JB. When we first moved in October, she would stand at the top of the stairs and yell, “Ready to go! Ready to go to JBs!” She’s stopped demanding that we head out and started asking in the most heart-wrenching little voice. “See JB? Please, mommy? Yea. Let’s go. Go when the light turns green.” She doesn’t understand the concept of distance and the 5 hours that lay between us now. And honestly, I wish I didn’t.
With the help of the iPod on repeat of movies and pictures of JB and LB growing up, we travelled the five hours to our friend’s house. The girls played, the adults flirted with the baby, the women talked and the men sat and nodded. It’s wonderful how comfortable you can be in a friend’s house. LB giggled non-stop for six hours before crashing in a complete exhausted heap at the hotel requesting to go see JB in the morning. She recounted the entire day complete with what she ate with JB and how they played outside in boots and kicked a ball. I think she was in heaven. Actually, we all were.
The next morning we got up and headed to a local coffee shop to meet Emily from Red W(h)ine and Boo. The three little gals played while the parents chatted over yummy coffee. She’s just as fun as you’d expect from her website and even easier to chat with in person. I think the next time we get together, though, I"ll have a lot better photo opps leaving both of our children home with daddy and going out for a mom-drink with the ladies. Oh, and I promise to blog that drunk. With a podcast. Of all of us. Because you want that. Trust me. (eye roll)
The best thing about the weekend was knowing how close five hours can feel sometimes. Kids, pregnancy, nap schedules, colds (oh! The ENDLESS COLDS!) gas, cars, and hotel stays can make five hours feel almost impossible. To be able to look at your toddler one day, ask her “Do you want to go see JB?” see her little face light up with complete excitement and decide that yes, we are going, we will go for a visit, is quite possibly the best thing I learned this weekend. Knowing that it’s hard to get together is ok. Realizing that it’s not impossible is even better.