I do remember promising to let you know about the vision board I was planning to create, but I never got to it. Just as I was easing in to my prescribed program of self-discovery, I was grounded by a whole series of events. Every few days there was something else to cope with, like one of those Choose Your Own Adventure stories. And maybe it was like that, in a cosmic sort of way.
The Big Change started slowly at first. In the spring, my two oldest kids moved out on their own. I was okay with that; I got set to enjoy a little more space and a lot less noise. A month later, my fourteen year old son announced that he’d decided – nothing personal but – he’d like to move some 700 kilometers away to live with his father. He didn’t really mention the distance, but he didn’t have to, and I did take it personally, even though (or perhaps because) his father is a pretty nice guy.
Anyway, he made the move, and we all adjusted and it worked out nicely for everyone, really, and I ended up with even more space and less noise than ever. (Of course I do miss him dreadfully, but he is happy, and that was the point.)
So. Mum-of-four suddenly became mum-of-one. Katie, thankfully, is still too young to leave. For a few suspenseful hours she also considered life with dad, but in the end she decided to stay because she really doesn’t like to share, and this whole Only Child development was looking just too sweet to pass up.
Not to mention that I’m the only one who will listen to her sing. (And occasionally I give her candy.)
There ensued a (spacious and peaceful) respite from the chaos of moving trucks and people and then quite suddenly, I was laid off from my Very Nice Job. It really had been just a temporary position, but I’d been working there for a whole year and a half and I’d gotten rather comfortable, in a Oh-why-do-I-have-to-bother-looking-for-another-job sort of way. So my lay-off came as sort of a shock.
It was such a shock, I suppose, that two days later I fell off my roller skates and broke my right arm in two.
Now, here’s the sub-plot: I’d given notice to move, so during all of this losing-my-job-and-breaking-my-arm thing, I was looking for a new place to live, packing boxes, holding yard sales and cleaning house.
I’d like to say that the move came off without a hitch (which in fact it did, because I didn’t have a trailer), but it was long. And painful. As moves usually are. At the end of the second day I finally called it quits and put everyone out of their misery. Whatever was left at the old place couldn’t possibly fit anyway, and who knows? Maybe they wouldn’t even notice that I hadn’t washed the walls. In any case, I was very glad that it was over and I wouldn’t have to go through that again for at least another year or so.
Just as we were settling into our cozy new digs, my car began to complain. I took it in to the local shop and got a phone call from the garage owner one quiet afternoon: “You need a new clutch…should be about $2,000.00.”)
And when I went to pick it up and drive it home? Someone had stolen my license plate.