With another year having zipped past all of us, Molly, the boys, and I wish you all the best and a Happy New Year. It is always good to try to answer the question " what did you learn in the last year?", and a few (potentially obvious) things come to mind:
- A profound interaction occurs when the end points of the human journey meet. Toddlers are about as a) unfettered in their thinking, b) uncluttered in their beliefs, & c) optimistic about and focused upon the next moment as one can be. Their grandparents carry a unique "long view" of our decisions and current situation, and in many respects are a pure complement to their grandchildren. So when the two meet, it is a remarkable reaction, like two musicians with different musical talents, and hence creating a sublime harmony.
- People are the magical part of a destination. After having resided in Boston for 8 years, we left the area with a tangible degree of hesitance, even though logic and research stated that the Seattle area had many positives: pristine natural surroundings, solid local economy, good schools, etc. But what we additionally discovered is an array of local people who are down-to-earth, genuine, collaborative and very optimistic about things in general. It is hard to articulate what this does for making the move feel like a really positive one.
- Given the distance from (our) family, keeping in touch takes some real effort. We had the good luck to spend time during 2006 in both Atlanta and Murphysboro, and to have grandparents, aunts and uncles visit us (all these new titles take some time getting used to). The visits are never long enough (including one to San Francisco) but I will say the boys are building a real enjoyment in engaging with immediate and extended family. So this is something to keep in mind whenever you have a chance to move "away"
- Establishing a balance between your "home career" and your "work career" takes real attention. One hard reality is that it is more tricky than meets the eye to watch how one balances the time devoted to things at home vs. things at work. I would say 2006 saw the pendulum sway too far to the work end (lots of interesting things to undertake) and now it is time to pull it back.
- Realizing the time gap since seeing old friends is dismaying. In the past year we have met up with a few old friends whom we had not seen in years, and had stayed in touch with sporadically. The delectable part of getting together was that if felt as if the conversation was simply continuing from moments prior. A point of dismay was lingering question – why did we get out of touch for so long? It is always an example of the way time marches on, whether you have a watchful or blissful eye.
A (Belated) Happy Holidays, God Bless You!