Moving is hard (she says in the whiniest voice she can muster). It’s not the physical move that’s difficult, rather it’s the settling. My old house was a three bedroom rambler, with a living room, family room, a dining room and kitchen. My new house is technically the same, but everything is bigger. So you’d think I’d have scads of space with an additional 1000 square feet. And really, it is big, but oddly enough I have too much furniture and not necessarily the right kinds. I can’t believe how much I fit in that little house.
My husband and I bought a king size bed before we even started moving things to the new house. It was my husband’s dream to stretch his arm out to his side in the middle of the night. Short of saying the honeymoon is obviously over, it’s more about the novelty that we have a bedroom big enough to house a large bed. Our old room was enough space for a queen platform bed, with drawers underneath. I squeezed a lounge chair next to my side of the bed with enough floor space to add the step stool I needed to climb into the very tall bed. But with the loss of that bed, I lost the space for clothes. I needed a dresser.
I have living room and family room furniture and the new rooms are definitely filled with furniture but none of it fits well. The gist being it’s not the same space. I can’t fit a square peg into a round hole. After spending the last couple weeks in shock and ruminating over my fate (why oh why did my husband need to move?), I may have finally realized I’m living here.
The shock has partly come from my husband not having his shop moved to the new place. I felt like a new bride whose husband rowed her out to a desert island and left her to figure out how to survive. I have told many people I don’t like this “husband the mover” because he’s been mostly unavailable to me as he completely focuses on moving his car stuff. To his credit, he’s doing his best, and probably doesn’t like this “wife the settler” who has appeared in his king sized bed.
I’m doing my best, too. I really try not to nag my husband, unfortunately there are some things I just can’t do myself, though I try. I was claiming a coat closet as a pantry, and couldn’t find the tools to remove part of the shelving. I moved myself onto installing a gliding pot rack on the top cabinet of the kitchen pantry. I got as far as mounting the unit with the last two screws and found there was too much gap in the lip of the cabinet. I needed my husband to fix it. So on my second “come home soon” plea, I burst into tears with the frustration of helplessness along a trail of half finished projects. I don’t like not being able to accomplish something on my own. My only consolation is that his idea of cooking a meal is stopping at the nearest fast food restaurant. He wouldn’t be able to whip up a batch of homemade soup. We each have our strengths and I needed a finished kitchen in order to continue settling a house much less run it like we’re actually living in it.
It is very overwhelming to reorganize a house into a new space when you’ve spent 27 years organizing the previous one. They say it’s all about the journey, not the destination. Psht. Whatever.
Gretchen Leigh is a stay-at-home mom living nearby in unincorporated King County. You can read more of her writing on her website livingwithgleigh.com, on Facebook at “Living with Gleigh by Gretchen Leigh.” Her column is available every week at maplevalleyreporter.com under the Life section.