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The Big Move and the Five W’s

By May 19, 2011May 22nd, 2011Goals, Relocation


So I promised our moving news on Monday, and you should have known that in my world that would mean nearly the end of the week. Things are crazy around here. A good kind of crazy, but nonetheless we find ourselves flying by the seat of our pants yet again. It’s almost as if we can’t help ourselves.

I mentioned briefly last week that we are indeed moving. Exciting! The surprise (to not only you but us), is that it’s not where we were planning to move or where we thought we’d even be at this point. It’s amazing how you can be running at one goal for so long and it ends up not so much falling through as shifting to accommodate the things you couldn’t have predicted happening. When I wrote our New Year’s post back in January, Neil was hitting a lot of roadblocks with his job. He was very unhappy and at the point of considering a change in career altogether, but not really knowing where to go from there. He had started applying for new jobs, both here for the interim while I finished school and in Colorado on the off chance that he’d get one and we’d move early. Not even a month after I posted, he was offered a job here in with a team that he worked with in his old job. He didn’t have a background in field, but the team liked his attitude and work ethic, and offered him a job. We treated it like a temporary fix for something that wasn’t working and continued planning for Colorado.

Very quickly though, I knew things were different. Instead of dreading work, and starting each day literally with the phrase “I want to call in sick today,” Neil was happy. He was learning a lot, befriending his coworkers and enjoying the type of work he was doing. He felt like it required a proactive skill, not just maintenance and oversight. This was huge, and I very quickly developed a familiar foreboding feeling of guilt gut.

Neil and my first vacation to Florida, while we were dating long distance. Seven whole days together felt like a dream, it was the longest time we’d spent together!

If you aren’t familiar with our story, Neil and I started our relationship long distance. We were three hours apart, and very quickly early on we realized a) were weren’t just dating b) life couldn’t move forward as long as we were apart and c) someone was going to have to move. Because I had just started grad school, Neil opted to move the three hours north to be with me, which meant leaving all of his friends, family and coworkers and a job he’d held for ten years. He took the first job he could get. It wasn’t ideal and I harbored a lot of guilt for essentially what I felt was making him move here and giving up everything to be with me. During some of the worst times at his job, I felt quite literally like I had ruined his life. Sure, it’s just a job, but when you have to be there 40+ hours a week, it’s hard to escape the all-encompassing presence it has on your daily life.

Seeing him so happy was thrilling, but I also knew it presented a potential kink in our original plan. Sure, we could move again, but what if we ended up right back where we were? Neil was just starting out in a new career path. He definitely wouldn’t be able to score a job in the same industry without more experience. It would mean going back to the old industry where he was a lot less happy. As anyone in their twenties knows, it’s a lot of work to find security and achieve that feeling of living somewhat comfortably, especially in a new marriage when you’re merging two lives. Would the mountains and scenery be worth losing our new-found comfort over?

We had been planning and researching for Colorado, but I was also keeping my eye out on things here. Researching housing prices, etc. One day I came across a house. The house as it would end up, that would put a nail in our old life plan coffin. A short two miles from work and downtown, and in the neighborhood I’d always dreamed of living in. Several years ago, when I was renting several blocks away and in a not so happy time in my life, I used to walk down the street and dream of one day being married, “comfortable” and a homeowner. Houses typically sell in less than ten days in the neighborhood, but on an offshoot, I scheduled a tour. We took the tour, constantly gauging what the other thought of the gorgeous old home we were walking through. Afterward, we sat in the driveway just staring at it. As it turned out, we were both been thinking the same thing. He wanted more experience in his new job so that our next move would be forward, and I wanted him to be happy and to eventually get my PhD. But more than anything, we just wanted stability. To know where we are going to be a year from now, five years from now. Definitely not forever, but for now, as we enter the next decade of our lives, something to build on and not simply perch from. We estimated last night that Felix has lived in ten homes since 2002. Spread out that’s one move a year! Or nomad lifestyle had grown mutually tiresome and inflexible, and we were beyond over it.

We put an offer in, crossed our fingers and waited.

Our offer was accepted, and for the past month we have been doing the dance of inspections, finger crossing, swearing and waiting. We move in next week, so I figured it was finally safe enough to come out with the news and explain the reasoning behind it. It’s not so much a goodbye to the idea of moving to Colorado so much as knowing what has to happen to make it a better situation and potentially not a worse one. While we’re sad we’re not moving, we’re extremely excited and happy to buy our first home together, and have a few more years with our friends and family nearby.

So there you have it. Good news? Yes. Bad news? I guess it depends how you look at it. Life does indeed move fast, but it can also change just as quickly, often when you are least expecting it. All the best things that have happened to us thus far have been the result of something we thought we really wanted not going exactly as planned. Has that ever been the case for you as well? I feel like the greatest blessings of my life have be born of what at the time felt like the greatest disappointments.

We can’t wait to share this exciting time with you, and I can’t wait to show you the house. We have A TON OF STUFF to do, and I have a feeling this will be one crazy summer!



  • Jess CVR says:

    Yay! I’m so excited for you guys! We are in the same boat… (not the new house boat, but the life taking a complete 180 from when we saw you guys over the holidays!) It’s funny how life works out… Congrats and enjoy – can’t wait to see pictures!

  • This is so exciting! I have found that sometimes it’s hardly worth making plans – you can’t account for the doors that are going to open along the way. It sounds like you’ve made the right choice in this instance and I’m excited to see pics of the new house and all the adventures you’ll have making it a home. Congratulations!

  • Elizabeth says:

    Congrats! Sounds wonderful to me! Can’t wait to see the new house!

    • Jessica says:

      I can’t wait to share it. I have pictures, but they are from the inspection. Not exactly the best way to introduce your new place with red arrows pointing at everything that needs to be fixed….

  • Cindy B. says:

    You’re staying? Yeah! I might actually have a shot at getting to know you IRL! 🙂

    • Jessica says:

      Haha yeah! I’m realizing more and more how many people I haven’t met yet despite living here for…14 years on and off? Crazy! Hope we can meet up soon!

  • Leah says:

    I see you also get boxes from the hospital 🙂

    We’ve moved once a year, on average, for the past decade (both separately and together). I’ve moved even more often than that. We’re just hoping to not have to move this summer — we currently live at a boarding school where my partner works, and we’re at the whim of the administration for housing. I definitely understand the desire for stability.

    • Jessica says:

      Yup! Neil still does work at the warehouse and has access to tons of boxes, some the former home of some pretty interesting supplies lol.

      I have mixed feelings about moving a lot. On one hand, you really don’t accumulate a lot of stuff, which is great because ironically, I don’t like to keep a lot of stuff. I also have always felt that moving a lot gave my life a feeling of momentum. It was hard to make the decision to stay to settle because it felt like there were all of a sudden less possibilities, less flexibility and a feeling of being somewhat limited, all of which moving a lot never made me feel. The upside of course is that you get to make your place a home, get to invest in something that is sticking around and don’t have to settle for what’s available to rent, which can often be limited depending on the market.

      I hope you get to stay put too!

  • Alisa says:

    Wow, congrats on the new house! Funny, I’m in an LDR and we’re at that point where someone needs to move. We’ve been looking at Colorado, but it will likely be me moving to him instead of him to MO. Columbia is a great place to live though, and you aren’t making a mistake. Best to you on your move to the new neighborhood!

    • Jessica says:

      LDR’s are tough, but looking back, I wouldn’t want our relationship to have started any other way. It gave us a hurdle that not only made us stronger, but made us take our time and focus heavily on communication, which I think a lot of relationships lack early on. Moving, and deciding who was moving was tough. I was also looking for jobs and would have moved if necessary. I hope you guys make it to the same city soon, and end up where you want to be together!

      • Alisa says:

        Hey thanks!
        Yeah, we’re 2000 miles apart (he’s in Santa Barbara with the good job). We’ve been flying back and forth for over 3 years now. It’s definitely time. lol I can definitely say that learning to verbally communicate has been crucial, and hopefully has created a foundation we can rely on as we learn to share the same living space. I love reading successful stories such as yours. Thanks for the blog. Food looks good, too, 😉 What type of camera are you using?