The story of moving

Lord help us, but we have decided to move. 

Gil Cat, poor kitty, is in hell. Brandon and I hate to move, but Gil Cat’s world has been rocked to a whole new level as we have begun packing up our five years in Clintonville. He’s trying to handle it, but he is one unhappy cat.

The place were moving into is just about ready. And so, in an effort to return Gil Cat’s world to something manageable, mom helped me load 23 boxes into our cars today and move them out to the new place. Dad met us at the new place and helped, too. 

We almost had the second car unloaded, down to two boxes, and I was half climbed-into the back of mom’s van, when I head the gate for the condo next door open. One of my soon-to-be new neighbors came out to meet me!

For five years I’ve lived on a perfectly fine street in an okay home. But the thing that has been missing (besides a dishwasher) is having neighbors that we talk to and get to know. Our neighborhood is so transient. 

Dan came out to meet me, and told me he was looking forward to having us live here. I told him how excited Brandon and I are to move in. 

We are moving in about a week and a few ever-fading days. Dan said he was glad because we would move in just in time for their party. 

We’ve been invited to a party – made up entirely of our neighbors – and we haven’t even moved in yet!

Maybe I won’t miss having trick-or-treaters as much as I thought. It will a totally reasonable trade off for neighbors I more than wave to, and hope they wave back.

T-minus 10 days!

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Fancy meeting you here…

Hello! It’s been a long time, hasn’t it? Whew, it’s been a year too. Lots of changes, mostly all good, and events. Sometimes I’ve had to look hard for the silver lining…but I think I’ve found it almost all the time.

Let me summarize my year: 

New job (and I LOVE it!), my vitamin levels took a dive and it was all I could do to climb out of bed each day, Brandon got his commercial license, massive power outage lasting for days, which led us to find our new place to live, pulmonary embolism (mine and boy was that no fun, but I appreciate each breath a lot more than I did), which led to weekly visits to get my blood drawn and a follow up procedure and lots of other things to suck up my time, Brandon is SO CLOSE to getting his instructor rating, which will lead to a job change for him, and we are moving in 11 days…

And soon it will be Christmas. Or, if you are a certain local radio station, maybe it already is.

So that is mostly why I haven’t written here since January. 

There have been other great changes. I have taken not one, but two, online writing classes. The first one didn’t really do much for me – I found it awkward and uncomfortable, but it helped me realize that I miss writing every day. So I tried again, this time with a writer I was more familiar with. The last day of the class was yesterday and I loved it. In the five weeks I found myself going from thinking of writing as my reward for accomplishing everything else on my list to looking forward to writing when I could to being outright protective of that time. (Seriously, don’t try to talk to me during my writing time…my eyes will burn red and my teeth and claws will injure you. I say because I care.)

I’ve been working hard on an idea I had a few months ago, and it’s finally starting to feel right, which is to say I don’t want to run screaming from it anymore. So I’m going to pursue and see where it leads.

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We did fun stuff too this year…in this photo you can see my Ace Pilot ferried me to Sandusky for a day.

And I’m going to run into you here more. So please keep coming back. I’m sorry I’ve been in hiding so long.

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Facebook interferes with my writing

Mark Zuckerberg, I have a bone to pick with you…why did you have to invent a website so compelling? A website that is such a black hole of time that I am a helpless victim with no choice but to sit and see what EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THE 500 friends I have (you know, just my best friends) are doing right now! I mean, if I log off, I might miss that somebody I used to know/haven’t talked to in 10 years and probably won’t ever again but we’re such good Facebook friends!, posted a picture of what they ate for dinner! The horror!

Seriously, why do people post pictures of what they ate for dinner? If you really want me to know about it, drop some off – it is probably delicious!

Okay. In fairness, this really probably isn’t a problem that Mark is responsible for. Before there was Facebook there was undoubtably a different time-sucking website, though I am hard pressed to think of one right now. Or there was TV.

The point is, it is really a pain in the behind to focus. Really. Big. Pain.

I have been sitting at my computer for 25 minutes and so far I have read my favorite writing blog (but that’s legitimate, right?), caught up on Facebook and now, in an effort to really not open that document I have been working on for over a month now (we’re at odds right now so I want to give it the silent treatment and really teach it a lesson) I am actually writing a blog post – which almost NEVER happens anymore!

Can we say fear of commitment?

FEAR OF COMMITMENT!

Very good kids!

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Merry Christmas!

Twas the night before Christmas…and all through the house…not a creature was stirring…not even a mouse…

But Gil Cat sat patiently under the tree…

Gil and OSU Santa patiently wait for Christmas to arrive

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Deep thoughts…

Today I have been thinking a lot about how and where we end up in life. How did I end up on the career path I did, and the home I live in with the husband I live with? How did he end up here? And how far back are things set in motion? How much of it was simply my decisions and how much of it was my parents or even grandparents?

I won’t swear to still believe this in a year, or even a week…but I think life is a series of choices. We reach a branch in the road we are traveling and we can go left or right.

When I was growing up choose your own adventure books were a big thing. You would finish a chapter and you had to choose one of the two (or sometimes three) options for the story to continue. I loved them. I soaked them up like I still soak up books today. But there was this one thing…I was always really stressed that my choice would make the book end badly. So, I would try to cheat and read option a, but then go back and read option b and figure out which one I liked better.

Honestly, thinking about it now gives me a serious headache.

But that’s like life, isn’t it? We reach the end of one chapter and we have to choose…but we can’t read ahead to see how it goes before we have to commit to a choice. So we worry about every choice we have made and where it has led us and where we are going from here.

But, then there is this idea of fate. Things happen when they are supposed to, in the exact way they are supposed to. Which would mean we could just float through life without a care – because what will happen (good, bad or indifferent) is going to happen with or without our help, encouragement, efforts or even awareness?

But what if life is somewhere in the middle? What if we are on a path that is set out for us? What if that path isn’t so much a straight line but twisty with lots of forks in the road? Maybe, I’m saying, there is a path that starts at the beginning and ends at the end, but gives us the option to choose the details.

And because of that, we have to choose to be present or not, to be happy or not, to value every moment and adventure and experience.

Your life is your story – choose your own adventure…wisely.

Mind-blowing, right?

 

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A love story…still unfolding

Once upon a time, a girl and a boy (who maybe looked more woman and man than boy and girl…but who are we to judge?) had a very pretty wedding with lots of family, friends and a few random strangers. And, for the next year, they lived happily ever after…right? Because it was super easy! Except for family illness, problems dealing with the Federal government holding up their end of a bargain made long ago when the boy said he would go fight for his country, and way way WAY too much on the schedule from day to day. Yeah, except for that…

And you know what? That girl was…ME! And that boy…it was Brandon! Hooray!

In other words, Brandon and I just celebrated our first anniversary!!!!!!! Of COURSE all those exclamation points are necessary…hi, my name is Laura…I love to overdue get punctuation EXACTLY right.

So, one whole year under our belts. That means we are experts at this, right? RIGHT? Probably not, actually. But we’re doing pretty good. The before referenced “opportunities to grow closer” have been challenging, but in all seriousness, I think we’ve done a decent job of approaching them together. As a team. That’s what all the so-called experts encourage, right? I’m assuming. You’ll need to let me know if I’m wrong because I don’t listen to them. Terrible listening skills are my plight in life.

Before I got married…I’m sort of ashamed to say this and I REALLY hope my mother has no knowledge of this blog and will never see me say this…my mother told me that being married was different than anything else I had ever done and kind of hard. My listening skills being what they are…I didn’t listen. Actually, I had a bit of an attitude. Shocking, I know. I thought “Hey, we’ve lived together for several years already. It’s the same thing, so I’ve got this whole marriage thing down already!”

Stop laughing.

You know what? We were both kind of right and kind of wrong. So there. I said it. My mother was not TOTALLY wrong – that’s as far as I’m willing to go. I had a pretty good handle on what it meant to live with another person…a BOY, nonetheless…and approach life together. This added level of permanency has been a strange, though not unwelcome, feeling. It’s been weird to realize that even when the tough stuff comes neither of us will ever be alone to deal with it again. That has taken some adjusting, honestly.

And I feel like I am in dangerous territory for this whole post being misunderstood.  So, in closing, I’m going to clarify.

My husband, Brandon, is amazing and I love him with all my heart. I feel fairly confident saying he feels the same. And living with him is NOT hard. Actually, living with our crazy furple (my new word), Gil, is actually harder than living with Brandon.  Seriously…PeePee Pants likes to jump on my head when I’m sleeping and follow me around the house “talking” to me. Have you ever seen that episode of Family Guy where Stewie is standing by his mother saying “Mom…Mom…Momma…Mommy…”and so on? That’s our cat.

I’m really proud of our first year together. It worked. And I’m nervous and excited and happy to think about everything that will come over this lifetime together.

Happy Anniversary Honey!

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Reminder to myself

Dear Self –

You have problems saying no to things. Seriously, you need to cut that out. It’s not that you really WANT to be involved in everything under the sun or that you have all this boundless energy to spend down (trust me, you definitely don’t have a lot of energy).

What I’m trying to say, Self, is that this is all a ploy. An attempt to keep you from sitting still. Sitting still is when you would have to write and, God forbid, we actually give ourselves the time to do that. It’s much easier to avoid it and say you never have time than to risk just sucking big time.

But I’m on YOUR side, so I wanted to alert you to this nefarious plot. (See what good writers we will be if we ever actually give ourselves the opportunity? We know the word nefarious.)

It’s easy!
Step 1: JUST SAY NO!

Step 2: Sit down, quietly or with good music. A pen and paper or a computer would be helpful with this step.

Step 3: Begin to write.

It’s really not that complicated, Self. It’s just that you  are scared. But don’t be. We can do this together. And the next time someone says, hey wouldn’t it be cool if you got involved in this, you will be able to shake your head, smile and say…”I’m sorry, but no, I just don’t have the time.” And then breathe a sigh of relief.

Go on, try it.

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