There are moments in your life that you are at peace with your decisions and everything seems to fall into place As you get older you spend more time reflecting, hoping that your life has been well thought out and carefully considered.Then there are the other times when you know you are moving entirely too fast. Despite your inability to stop, you move ahead, knowing that for whatever reasons, you are on a mission. For me, this is one of those times.
Eighteen days ago, we decided to move to London, after long night discussions, and various stop and goes. I know, my mother has filled me in. There are riots, kids burning buildings, and no, I have never made a decision like this before.
My husband runs a company out of England. He is transitioning into a new position, one that he couldn’t do whole-heartedly from the states. He has been putting in a valiant effort, traveling over 5 time zones in one week, and sleeping fewer hours than a horse without a stall. All his professional life, he has dreamed about building a global company. When you have a dream and a window of opportunity to follow that dream, life may not present it again. I wanted to support him. I knew we had to go.
My kids can’t wait. The employees of the company are anxious to see him, as a resident Brit my husband is elated to have dinner every night with his family for the first time in fifteen years. Me? I am excited to be with him, doing something I have never done before. I grew up in one town, went to college in the next town, started a business and a family in the same town, and now live in the next town, five miles due North. It was a safe, neatly created, perfect square.
Ordinarily, if you were to come to my home, you would find it neat, presentable, and everything in its place. I am the kind of person that feels uncomfortable when a cabinet door is left open or a chair isn’t pushed in. I live for my routine. As the kids advance to another grade, I know I am one year older.
Going into the vast unknown, I am not only moving beyond my five mile square, I am moving 4,000 miles away to a land where people call cigarettes fags, an elevator a lift, and drive on the wrong side of the road. I have a moving company coming to load my clothes in three days. and still I don’t have a house to live in. Just yesterday, we found out that my kids had been accepted into school. My mother, convinced that I am in my midlife crisis, still isn’t over the shock.
I am sad to leave behind my mother, my girlfriends, and one of my best friends, my dog Jake. Looking down at the big brown eyes, my heart drops. How could I get up in the morning and not have my running partner? Who would listen to me when I complained? Who would greet me at the door each and every time I came home as if they hadn’t seen me in months? I don’t think I even like myself as much as my dog likes me. It isn’t a choice. If I take him, I would have to quarantine him for six months.
Because it is too difficult to think about, today I will think about just today. I will shop for Pop Tarts, peanut butter, and jelly, our American comfort foods that are not offered abroad. I will continue to pack. I will make my obligatory phone calls.
“Yes, this is Wendy McGee I need to shut my phone off…. I need to turn my cable off…. I need to redirect my mail.”
“Will you be coming back?”
“You bet I will. A new, Wendy, who has broken out of her shell. She will be back, better, stronger, and at peace with a decision that will have changed the course of her family’s future.”
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