The Challenge of Moving

I read somewhere that the average homeowner moves about every seven years.  After moving into the Net Zero Nest this Spring I am wondering why?  Why would anyone ever move when it is so physically and emotionally exhausting?  Why bring out your worst qualities (that you can usually hide) and cause friction in an otherwise well-functioning family?  Maybe moving is like childbirth, something no sane person would undertake more than once without some sort of special, possibly hormonal, definitely species-preserving ability to forget.  Or maybe it’s a kind of seven year itch causing us to just want something more, or different.

Whatever it is, after almost eight years in our lovely Spanish home our family took the plunge again and moved four blocks into the future Net Zero Nest.

In a purely symbolic move, we rolled the basketball hoop on its rickety wheels to the new house.  It would be weeks before the rest of our stuff made the trip.

In a purely symbolic move, we rolled the basketball hoop on its rickety wheels to the new house. It would be weeks before the rest of our stuff made the trip.

In doing so, we downsized by 800 square feet.  So for us moving began with a painstaking inventory of our possessions to see what we could live without.  I am sure it will come as no surprise that we didn’t always agree.  That led to the awkward attempt to hock our belongings on Craig’s List.  I left that project to Nick who has a higher tolerance for haggling and waiting for people who never show up.  After that, came the 5am yard sale and finally the numerous round trips to Goodwill.  We were exhausted, and we hadn’t even started packing.

The move itself dragged on for weeks.  When you move four blocks, I think it is easy to be cavalier about how much help or organization you need.  I don’t need a ton of boxes, I will just pack a few, carry them down to the new house in our car, unpack them and repeat the process again endlessly.  When it got to be too much, i.e., when our new neighbors met the four of us carrying our daughter’s basketball goal down the street like a parade, we decided to call the movers.  Three strong men and a truck arrived and with their help we knocked the rest out in a matter of hours… still exhausted, but much relieved.

As consuming as it is, moving is definitely a fresh start.  Even in a shabby 1957 ranch with peeling paint, I feel excited about our journey and almost euphorically optimistic about what we can do with this house.  I am looking forward to the sweat equity, the memories we will make with our kids, and the new friends we will entertain.  Moving is hard, but new love is definitely sweet!

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