I stare at each item and wonder what kind of packing box it will require.
We have lived 25 years in the same house, yet I always think I’m going to move next year. I call in the painters and make sure it’s camera ready, walk from room to room with the eye of a would-be buyer approving the decor.
In preparation for what I believe is inevitable, I think about moving almost every day and then again at night.
It’s sort of a sickness. Prepare for the worst so it won’t hurt so much. During my slow walk to the bathroom in the middle of the night, I admire the moon through the skylight, as if it’s the last time.
And yet, it’s so easy to stay in the same place, the known, the comfortable, the familiar. It’s what I longed for and then finally obtained. Truth is I love my house, my deck, my yard, my town, the place we raised all three kids, the place where we were all so happy, made so many friends, connected with so many people –and yet I feel and fear it’s time to move.
My time here is running out. The timer was set 25 years ago and the buzzer is going off, especially now that our kids are leaving the nest.
The next 25 years will be full of looking back I’m afraid, no matter how wonderful the times will be. Of course life with a partner you love more than anything, full of adventure and travel sounds great and will be remarkable, but bittersweet. The past was never bittersweet; it was just sweet, even if you didn’t recognize it as such every day. You held your family in your hands, like baby birds, before you let them fly away. Your lives were one, inextricably linked.
Now the world is suddenly wide open, though it feels more caged than ever before.
Fear creeps in as I recognize the one avoidable thing can not be avoided: loss and growing old.
as published in Better After 50