When I was 18, fresh out of high school my parents abandoned me and moved here, to Idaho Falls. My mother grew up here and I am technically from here (I was born here and lived here until I was two) so when they moved here this quickly became "home". I know that it has more to do with my parents and family than the actual location; if they decided to move to Nebraska or Brazil, that too would quickly be called home, even though I have no real connection to either. But, one way or the other, they live here and I live here so, in this present moment, it is home.
It's not as easy as that though, because for the last thirteen years I have lived in Southern California. SoCal and I have a very complicated relationship. We have, at times, hated each other. It should not be over 100 degrees in October. It really just shouldn't. It should not take 45 minutes to drive 15 miles. No one should live in a 1100 sq. ft house worth a half million dollars. But, we have loved each other too. Ben and I "grew up" there, learning to depend on each other and eventually getting to the point where others could depend on us. We learned to love the hills covered in orange groves and farmer's markets that went year round. We made friends that turned into family. We loved it, very much. So now that I'm here, when I refer to home it means California. It's confusing, I know, but it gets worse.
Really, if we get down to brass tacks, "home" is Orem. Orem is where I went to school, had my first job, where I went to college, met my husband, bought my first house, had my first baby. It has changed a lot over that last 18 years; the orchard behind the house I grew up in is now a subdivision, my best friends have moved away, the swimming pool I learned to swim in is now a water park and they tore down my high school last year. But every time I go back, when I spend a summer night in the shadow of my mountains, it still says home to me and I love it. I'm glad that I feel that way because in July...I'm moving home.
When we left Santa Clarita last summer, we felt inspired to do it. We had never lived near our families and Ben was self-employed, working from home, the timing seemed perfect. We also felt like a year was what we were being asked to do and, with our limited understanding, we assumed that meant we would move back and just re-insert ourselves into our previous lives in Newhall, we REALLY DID think that. Apparently, God had other plans. In January, both Ben and I began to grow weary of our self-employed life. We decided it was time to look for a job. We applied for dozens, focusing on here and California. Nothing. Then one just kind of fell into our laps. Ben called a company in January, mostly on a whim, it didn't even have any jobs available, and long story short, they have a job now and they want Ben. The company is in Colorado now but moving to the Lehi area this summer; Ben starts mid July. He will be the media director for a growing company that, in a nutshell, is working to promote and sustain healthy families. We've pretty much decided to live in Orem because I am prejudiced and think it's the best place in the whole valley.
So there you have it, our big news. I'm going home. I wish that it was a move filled only with joy, but the truth is this move is more than tinged with sadness. I have loved being here, just minutes away from my sisters and parents. It has been one of the sweetest years of my life. I will miss, with an actual ache, my "family" in California. When we left, the sadness was tempered by our belief that we would be back soon, now that we aren't it makes my heart hurt. I wish I could express to you how much my association with you over the years has meant to me. You filled the mother and sister shaped holes in my heart. You taught me to be a better wife, mother and friend. I love each of you so much and I feel so blessed to have been able to be a part of your lives.
So there you have it. Our big news. I wish I could have called you all and told you in person, it seems so impersonal in a blog, I know. I'm just not sure emotionally I could have taken it. So, here's the plan, I will forward the want ads to you all and then you can all move to Utah and then we can be together again.
Can't blame a girl for trying.