It’s been a hard move.
Tulsa is a lovely city. Far more so than I could have dreamed. The streets are clean. The library is wonderful. The buildings have history and charm that Anchorage cannot match.
And the weather is a dream, now that it has cooled down a bit.
I admit, when I see my Alaska friends and family post about freezing temps and snow, I smile a bit smugly as I don my t-shirts and sandals. I am gleeful when I look at the thermometer and see it reading 71 degrees, at 9pm. I am thrilled that I can walk all day, all over town, and not be chilled.
And the schools are good.
Broder has never done better, his grades are amazing, and he is taking an interest in new things. Sunny is in a running club, choir, and a dance group. Kjell is on student council, and in academic bowl, German club.
We have a church we enjoy, the worship is amazing, the preaching is solid.
Our house is fantastic. Big, funky, quirky. Everything I had hoped it would be.
And yet, this has been the hardest move. Ever.
For weeks, even months, I could not figure out why.
Things were good. On paper.
But in reality, this move has been hard, so very very very hard.
And I realized:
This is the first time we have moved where I have been truly alone.
When I moved to Alaska, at 20, I moved full of adventure, and in with my sister.
When Dave and I uprooted the family and moved to Minnesota, we moved in with my parents.
When we moved to Madison, we didn’t know anyone, but we moved on campus, where everyone was there temporarily, and this formed instant community.
And back then back to Alaska.
That was just going home. Even though we moved to anchorage, and not wasilla, we still had friends. We were not alone.
Here we have been alone.
Never have I been somewhere where I knew NO ONE.
I had to ask my landlord (who has become a friend, on the road to dear status) to be my emergency contact should the kids have an issue and I was out of reach. That was hard.
But it’s changing.
Last weekend we were invited to a party.
This week I had lunch with Anne ( the aforementioned landlord).
Yesterday, my next door neighbor stopped by, without an invitation. And asked me for a favor. I nearly fell over myself saying yes.
And today, I ran into someone I “knew” in the grocery store. The joy of that simple, everyday event nearly brought me to tears.
So, it’s slow, but it’s happening.
Tulsa is home.