Sunday, June 3, 2012
Life for Rent
(Getting ready to leave Omaha)
Ten years ago today we loaded my Geo Prizm onto a trailer attached to a U-Haul truck containing everything we owned and moved to Omaha. If you told me that day that I would be blogging about it, I wouldn't have believed you because a) I'd never heard of a blog and b) I was pretty sure I would implode when I crossed the Nebraska state line. People in my family don't move away. I live a few miles one way from the house I grew up in and a few miles the other way from the house where my dad was born. I can look out my windows and see the church that stands on the site where my grandma went to school. We just don't do things like move away, especially to another state. When you marry someone in the military, though, you don't have much of a choice.
From the time I met Jay in high school, he had talked about going into the Air Force to pay for medical school, so it wasn't as if the whole moving thing took me by surprise. When we got engaged, I knew that meant I was leaving, but I still lived in denial. When I finally had to face it, I bucked up and got a job in Nebraska and picked an apartment and loaded everything up. And on June 3, 2002, I started my countdown until we could move home.
A funny thing happened on the long way home, though. I found out I liked Omaha. And when it was time to leave for Oklahoma City, I missed it. And when it was time to leave Oklahoma City, I missed it--much more than I missed Nebraska. I had learned to be a buyer, even when we knew we were leaving, and that makes leaving hard, even if you're going somewhere good. There were moments when I felt like a renter from time to time. When I was pregnant with Jack (who, coincidentally, was due on June 3), I remember the day it hit me that not only would my child not be born at the hospital where I was born, it wouldn't even be born in Oklahoma. As dumb as it seems, I couldn't wrap my mind around that. And really pretty much every time I had to drive in the snow, I was counting down the weeks. Other than that, though, it was good.
Obviously a lot has changed in the last decade. We were 25 years old with no kids when we moved. For the first time ever, we both had real jobs that actually paid something decent. Now I'm basically unemployed and we've added a couple of kids to the package.
So ten years later, I'm glad we moved. Thanks to cell phones, I could call my mom about grocery questions and have my dad help us jump Jay's car from 400 miles away. I learned I could do things on my own, like pick a house, or raise a kid for four and a half months. I know that I can do pretty much anything now. Was it easy? No, but everything I have is truly mine.
(Tonight was their family birthday party!)
Thanks to my fabulous husband for the adventure. I would move again with you in a heartbeat, though I really hope we don't have to!
But if my life is for rent, and I don't learn to buy,
Well, I deserve nothing more than I get,