One year. The day after Easter marked exactly one year since moving to this house. This small town. This place we now call home. This place where traffic jams are 6 cars in a single file line stuck behind a tractor on the highway. This place where everyone goes to the county fair because it is awesome. This place where life feels so much more relaxed, so much slower, so much more like the way God wants it to be.
One year sounds like a long time when you're looking forward, but it feels like the blink of an eye when looking back, most of the time. I can look back at the 18 months during which we lived in PA fully aware that it was, at that time, the most difficult 18 months of our lives.
Moving to Columbus was a breath of fresh air.
And moving away from Columbus was also a breath of fresh air.
One that I'm not sure we even realized we needed. The first several months were crazy and hectic and I don't remember them fondly at all because we were living in two cities, traveling to Columbus and spending a couple nights there each week until the kids' dance and piano recitals were complete.
I remember the moment when we drove away from the high school after Ava's dance recital better than the moment when we drove away from the house where we spent 5 years of our lives. It was the moment when I realized that chapter was over. Completely.
And I felt indifference and guilt because I didn't feel as sad as I thought that I should feel after spending 5 years of my life in Columbus. We had family there. We had a great church. We had friends.
We weren't intimately tied to any of those things as much as we wanted to be. We anticipated that things would be very different. We were moving to Eric's hometown when we headed to Columbus. We had connections with family and friends. The problem was, those people had lives and friends and didn't need us. Or maybe they were just busy.
Who we are as kids isn't who we are as adults, and some people can't move past that. This means, in some relationships, you are so different that you don't have that intimate friendship you had at 16, and there's nothing that either person can do about it. In other relationships, it means you can't have a relationship at all because one person can't move past who you were at 14, and they choose to still believe you are that immature adolescent. It is what it is, right? It's hard work to change people's minds, and we found, after 5 years of trying diligently to prove ourselves to those people, it wasn't really worth it. It wasn't worth it at all. Unfortunately, sometimes, a family is too damaged to repair individual relationships within itself. This was a sad lesson for us to learn even though most of the reasons surrounding it weren't directly our fault.
This has worked toward our benefit here in Coshocton. Who I was at 16 didn't really allow me to be close to my sister's friend, Stephanie, but who she and I have become allows us to be very close now, and our husbands love each other. Steph and Robbie were here at our new house waiting for us when our moving truck pulled up to the curb. They were the first ones here and the last to leave. They've offered us hospitality over and over, and we have welcomed them here. It is a friendship that we will forever cherish.
And they aren't the only ones with whom God has allowed us to connect our reconnect with since moving here. I could dribble on and on about the friendships we are growing here, people we have re-connected with, new friendships, a church where we are loved. Most importantly, we spend so much time with my parents. For that, I will always feel blessed when I think of how God orchestrated this move for us. Circumstances weren't ideal, but God made it clear that He wanted us here, and He has shown us in marvelous ways that this move was completely and totally in His perfect plan for us.
This place has always been somewhat magical to me. No matter where I have lived, this place, this small town of Coshocton, always lured me back with it's tree covered hills, shallow canals, fields bursting with corn and soy beans, and people. I can't say enough about the people.