On Moving

Friday, May 1, 2015

I'm 23 years old and have moved seven times, four of which were all within one town in northern New Jersey and one of which was a move between vacation homes in Rhode Island.  When I was in fifth grade, my best friend moved from NJ to London.
By no means were any of my transitions drastic.  Because I have moved quite a few times, I was more attached to the town where I lived, rather than the house itself.  Sure, I liked certain homes more than others and experienced melancholy over leaving them, but it wasn't like I was leaving my beloved, long-time childhood home.  Some friends of mine have lived in the same house for eighteen years, and associate most childhood memories with the home itself.  The home itself is comforting, like a familiar baby blanket is to a toddler.  There is beauty in this.  It is lovely to be so comfortable in a space that it has been and always will be "home."

The closest I come to a childhood home is my last house that I moved from.  I lived in this one home for eight years, and truly loved it: the glen of trees in the backyard, my caring neighbors, the sidewalk-free cul-de-sac we bike rode in at the bottom of the street.  I was saddened to leave it behind.  It was the last place that I saw my father before he passed away, so it felt like an important landmark in my mind.  Before living in my most recent-old house I was happy to move - excited for a new adventure of interior design (I know it's weird because I was like eight at the time....).  But moving from this home left me feeling conflicted.  I didn't want to leave my beloved neighborhood and the neighbors who knew me so well.  The day after moving, I woke up and cried because things just felt off: unfamiliar and uncomfortable.  Quickly, though I grew excited about the new adventure.  I had been anthropomorphizing my home, when really the way I felt about that home was how I felt about my relationships with those close to me.  That love wouldn't drift away with the sale of a structure.  It would forever be within me, in my soul, past the death of the relationships themselves.  Moves offer new opportunities and new avenues to explore ourselves and our preferences.  I've learned that moving teaches me that I am what's consistent - not external things around me.  The relationships that last past moving are the ones that are most important.  

Former R.I. vacation home Former R.I. vacation home

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