When the movers are coming, you aren’t packed, and all you can do is drink a glass of wine …
It hasn’t hit me that my family and I are leaving Oklahoma on Saturday, and judging by these empty suitcases, it’s safe to say I’m in denial. The living room is still a mess from my kids playing. There’s dirty clothes laundry hampers. The trash hasn’t been taken out, and the dishes in the sink need cleaning. Any yet, here I am sitting inside my home office catching up on all the reality television shows I have yet to watch.
Movers are coming to pack up this house tomorrow, and I’m completely dumbfounded.
But at least this glass of red is delicious.
It’s been two years since my husband and I packed up and left New Jersey, and my, has it been a ride. Putting the glistening lights of The City That Never Sleeps I’ve come to love in the rear view mirror, I couldn’t believe how quickly I embraced Oklahoma. (Southern traditions, family values, and the tastiest sweet tea you’ll ever drink will do that to ya.) This became our home, the state where we welcomed our second child, and a place that taught us not to live in fear — no matter the tornadoes, earthquakes, and hell heat that came our way.
I met so many amazing people here and hate the idea of saying goodbye. But in life, all good things must come to an end.
As we start taking photos off the walls and packing our bags for our flight, I raise my glass of wine — which happens to be from Oklahoma — and toast our time here. Oklahoma has taught me it’s okay to relax and not be in a hurry, that you aren’t weird for referring to people as “Sir” or “Ma’am,” you aren’t archaic for embracing tradition, and that veggies taste so much better in butter.
It was here that I reacquainted myself with (mixed) martial arts, continued my community involvement, and joined the Yelp OKC elite squad that allowed me to fall in love with the surrounding areas over and over and over again. (They also gave me and my guy some of the best date nights and adventures you could ever imagine.)
I will miss the many people I’ve come to know as friends, dear acquaintances, and that small town feeling I get whenever I enter my local Subway or Walmart and see familiar faces.
I’ll miss the drop-in childcare in Moore, Oklahoma, that’s close to the Warren Theater where the mister and I have dined, sipped AMAZING cocktails, and watched movies in plush seating. (Man, I’m really going to miss that!)
I’ll miss venturing out to a nearby Christmas tree farm to cut down our own tree for the holidays — and not having the adventure turn into an unwanted reenactment of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. Both my 2 and 1-year-old boys spent their first Christmases in Oklahoma, with a tree they proudly “helped” pick out.
I will miss our church, Destiny Christian Center, who taught us about growing in the Lord and discovering the purposes of God for our lives. I can only hope (and pray) we find a new church home that’s about serving others, living in the Word, and letting your hair down.
Yeah, that’s our pastor in Chucks dressed up as Moses for our fall celebration.
I’ll miss the never-ending social calendar of events Oklahoma has to offer — including the random medieval festivals you stumble upon while out with your family. This state has everything from waterfalls to family farms, campsites along the lake, hot air balloons, and everything in between.
In case you can’t tell, I’m going to miss Oklahoma … a lot.
So as I head off to start packing a couple of suitcases, and finding the damn ladder to remove those pesky wall decals in my sons’ room — that took a LONG time to put up (it’s okay) — I think I’m ready to say goodbye.
I’m always asked how I, a city girl and east coaster, could ever survive in such a place like Oklahoma. And my answer is always the same.
… That’s because you never called it home.
Thank you for the memories.
Images via Tanvier Peart