February 27, 2007 at 10:17 am (Uncategorized)

One thing that has made moving hard for me is that I have always wanted my kids to have the kind of stability that comes with living in one place for a long time.  We lived in 6 different houses in my 18 years of growing up.  Some were moves were just across town and the farthest was across the State.  But, the one thing I hated as a kid was starting over.  Whether it was at a new school, new neighborhood, a new church or a new girl scout troop, I always felt like the new kid.  When I got older and moved to California I can remember going to church and hearing people say things about having "grown up in this church" and feeling really envious.  I KNEW I wanted my kids to have that experience.  I NEVER planned on moving once I had kids.  EVER!  But, as I have learned over and over and over in my life, my plans NEVER pan out.  So here we are moving our kids again….This will be the 3rd State they have all lived in, even the 3 year old!

So, I have been trying to turn my thoughts to the positives of moving around...Here are a few I have come up with.

My kids are not attached to a house.  They like our house, but HOME is where our family is.  When I hear stories about grown ups who are upset with their parents for selling the family home I am dumbstruck.  I have just never felt a big attachment to a house.  My home is made of people, not places! The funny thing is when I think of home in terms of where my parents lived I always think of the final house my Mom and Dad lived in before my Dad died.  I actually never lived in that house!  It was a great house though and I loved going to see them there and I have so many fond memories of that house.  (And NO I was NOT upset when my Mom sold it!  LOL)

My kids have experienced different cultures.  Now we have not lived outside the USA, but I can tell you having lived in 3 different States and eight different towns/cities that each one has it’s own culture.  From the foods that are eaten to the way people act.  My kids know this because they have lived in different places, eaten different foods and had different experiences depending on where we have lived.

My kids have learned how to fit in.  As much as I don’t like being the new person all the time, I can walk into any room and make myself comfortable.  I am at ease introducing myself and talking to new people.  My kids are too.  My 3 year old managed to introduce our entire family today while we traveled 1 floor in an elevator!  LOL  These kids have learned how to fit in and make themselves known to those around them.

My kids will be great AWANA leaders some day!  I know this one seems odd…But we have been involved with 5 Awana clubs in 10 years! I frequently hear my kids say things like, I love the game time here, but I think the way they handled "XZY" was better in California!  LOL   The truth of this lesson is…there is not one "right" way to do something!  AWANA is very similar all across America, but each club has it’s own personality based on the people who run it.  This is true about many things in life. 

My kids are not afraid of new experiences.  My kids are actually excited about moving again!  They know that they will meet fun knew people and go fun new places.  Instead of dreading the unknown they look forward to it!  Talk about making lemonade when life gives you lemons!

My kids know you can’t judge a book by it’s cover!  The place we are currently living is the last place on in America I ever wanted to live!  I came here kicking and screaming and assuring anyone who would listen that this was NOT a good place for my family!  My kids knew I didn’t want to be here!  You know what happened?  We have met really great people and had some wonderful experiences!  I am still not completely comfortable with the City, but I have learned soooooo much about myself and been forced to trust God in ways I never should have imagined 3 years ago! 

My kids know Rome wasn’t built in a day!  Unfortunately we all know that it takes time to adjust to a new place.  Out of all 17 times I have moved in my life I have only moved one place that I fit in immediately!  (Ah…Woodland, California!  My home sweet home!)  All the others have taken at least 2 years to feel like home.  (Of course we have established in another post that I have moved on the average of  every 3 years…sooooo…I am used to not feeling at home much!  LOL) 

My kids know that siblings will always be with you!  The one thing I learned quickly when I was a kid was that my sister was my forever friend!  Yeah, we fought.  But she was always there!  I had friends at all the houses we lived in and am still friends with many of them…But, once we moved I was away from them.  Back then we didn’t have things like unlimited long distance, email, instant messaging, etc.  Once you left a house the people you use to see everyday went on with their lives and I went on to build a new life.  But, I always had my sister!  Yes, my kids drive each other crazy, but they have history and many, many, many hours spent together.

My kids know that sometimes you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do!  LOL  Although there were times when I was a kid that I felt like my parents were just moving to torture me, I truly always knew they were just doing what need to be done.  Whether it was for a job opportunity or a better neighborhood there were always underlying reasons for the move that I just had to accept.  The same goes for my kids.  I have heard them tell each other "Do you like eating?  Well, then we have to go where the job is!"  Huh, I wonder where they ever heard such a thing?  LOL

My kids have learned to find the positive in things.  As I look back to all the places I have lived there are none of them that I now wish I had skipped!  I have friends in each and every place and great memories too.  I have learned that no matter where you live there will be good and bad things and you might as well enjoy the good and ignore the bad.  It makes life a lot happier!  My kids know this too.  One of the things we all hate about where we live is the heat in the Summer.  I mean it is REALLY HOT!  I heard my son saying the other day "The Summers are awful, but the rest of the year the weather is great, so I guess it’s a trade off!" 

I know that probably by now no one is still reading this!  LOL  But, this has been very thereaputic for me to write.  I still have those little twinges of wishing I could have raised my kids in one place.  It especially find this true at church,  it seems so comfortable to grow up in the same familiar body of Christ…..

But, the truth is God did not promise me that life would be comfortable.  He never told me life would be easy.  He never promised to make me feel at home here on earth!  He just promised that no matter where I live on this earth He would be with me! 

…be content with such things as you have.  For He Himself has said,
"I will never leave you or forsake you."
Hebrews 13:5

So until I get to my "real" home in heaven with Him I will just have to continue to trust Him!  I will have to let go of my fears, guilt and twinges of envy for life on the other side of the non moving fence.  I will have to continue to learn that the lessons He has to teach me cannot be taught in the ways I think they should.  I will have to continue to live life where ever He sends me.

Of course, a part of me will always be hoping that the next move will be our last!

In case anyone was wondering…
My oldest child has lived in 5 houses in 12 years
My middle child has lived in 3 houses in 6 years.
My youngest child has lived in 3 houses in 3 years.
I have lived in 14 houses in 42 years….


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