When we moved here three years ago, we had been searching for a stable and affordable living situation. We wondered if Turlock could truly be our home, but over time it seemed not quite right for us. Going into it, we figured we could at least have a bit of calm while we looked for a better fit. And that's pretty much what happened. Plus a baby.
For multiple reasons, we've decided to move to Olympia, Washington. We'll be living with my parents for a little while and then probably getting our own place nearby. As I write those last two sentences, I'm sighing with the foreknowledge of the stress moving brings (made even more difficult with a toddler and diabetic cat in the mix), the awkwardness of living in someone else's house for a while, and the uncertainty of it all. Not to mention my reluctance to leave an employer who's been very good to me but looking forward to taking some time off. It's exciting, and it's a decision we made together, but of course it's complicated.
The biggest factor prompting this move has been my health. I have gallstones, it turns out, which are very common and easily fixed by removing the gallbladder. Because it took so long to diagnose me*, however, I ended up about 25 pounds below my normal weight, irritable, and depressed. I'm on an antidepressant now and, well, uprooting my life to find some peace of mind, body, and spirit.
There are other factors, though. I believe the past seven months have taken quite a toll on my family and me. I think we all need a restorative change in our life.
Moving this time around was a very difficult decision. I kept thinking, "But our life works here." When we started discussing the possibility of moving, though, I realized our life wasn't working as well as I thought. We weren't happy as a couple, and I wasn't happy with how we were spending our time as a family.
And that brings me to our wellbeing. Turlock has indeed been good for a lot in our lives, but long term, it's not the right place for us. I want us to be outdoors more, but the summers are too hot to be able to play outside all day, and there are no hills or interesting short, local hikes here. You have to drive quite a ways to go somewhere scenic and even farther to go somewhere cooler. I dreamed of showing Sam the wonders of our world, but now we pay to take him to classes just so we can get out of the neighborhood. There's also the fact that I'm working full-time as the primary income earner in our household, but I'd really like to spend more time with my, let's say, domestic life. Once I'm feeling better physically, I don't want to just dive back into full-time work.
Lastly, having my parents, sister, and cousin close by will be great for Sam and for us as a couple, knowing that we can have some help with childcare. The more I listen to fellow parents, the more I see the value of having trustworthy people around who you can call to bring you some soup when both parents are too sick to cook and who can keep you company when you need another adults to converse with. It's not just about childcare but whole family care. Sure, you can raise your children without a strong support network, but at what cost to your emotional wellbeing?
So, off we go! Our next big adventure.
*It was my midwife who was able to get me the answer. I went to see her for my well woman exam, and right away, she thought it was a gallbladder problem and got me an ultrasound within a week.