People move all the time. For jobs, for families, for something…different. Moving can be a time of high anxiety, placing higher-than-normal amounts of stress on yourself, your spouse, your whole family. Throw a couple of young children and a 21-hour car ride in there, and you’ve got yourself an adventure.
For a long time, my husband and I had talked about, daydreamed, and imagined moving away from where we grew up. Although scary and full of the unknown, the thrill of adventure took over our hearts, and we set out to make it happen. After researching, visiting, and planning, we decided Phoenix would become our new home.
Off we went. After a four-day, seven-state drive -with two kids under the age of 3- we finally crossed the Arizona border on a warm, breezy September day. Upon arrival, we immediately set off to fulfill the daunting task of carving our own place here, in a new town, state, climate, and timezone. It’s downright exhausting to complete the grunt work of a move: finding new doctors, grocery stores, pharmacies, libraries, setting up utilities, etc. Not to mention learning about an entirely different environment complete with dust bowls, scorpions, and javelinas. Overwhelming, to say the least. But I simply made a lengthy To-Do list and started crossing items off, one by one.
In truth, I was most focused on filling the part of my soul that needed attention first: I needed to make some friends here. As a stay-at-home mom, I knew how easy it could be to slip into a state of isolation. I wanted playdates, coffee chats, mom’s nights out, and family dinners. Talk about feeling like the new kid in school; it can be extremely indimidating going up to a strange group of people and introducing yourself. But that’s what I had to do, and that’s exactly what I did. Yes, it was scary. Yes, I felt shy and downright silly walking up to a complete stranger and saying “Hi, my name is…” But by facing my own fears and insecurities, I have gotten playdates and conversations and the beginnings of friendships I can tell will continue to grow. And every day I feel myself getting closer and closer to the very beautiful place of feeling comfortable in my own skin. A place I do not think I could have reached by merely staying settled in my comfort zone.
As difficult as it is to not be near our families and cherished friends, I am eager to begin new traditions here and to celebrate all we’ve accomplished this year as a family. Moving has brought us closer than I ever thought possible, and I know it is just another notch on our marriage belt, another brick of foundation made to strengthen it.
Life is about cherishing the ones you love and making the most of this crazy, beautiful life we’ve been given.
Life begins outside of your comfort zone.
Danielle recently moved from Iowa to Arizona with her husband Ryan and two children Caden and Mabel and is still working on the whole adjustment thing. Enjoying the scenery, making new friends, and finding her way around this crazy-fabulous place. In no particular order, she loves scrapbooking, books, coffee, the ocean, music, getting all dolled up, playing make-believe with her little ones, moonlighting as a hairstylist, and the color pink.