Here’s the thing. We live on a sweet little street. There are six houses. Four families, including ours, have been here since years before the turn of the century—the 21st Century, if you please. The corner house’s long-term owner moved on. It suffered interim abuse and is now a rental. (Which is the worst fate I can imagine, both for the house and the neighborhood.) One house had a lot of turnover, but is now owned and loved by a young family with an exuberant four-year-old we call the mayor of the cul-de-sac.
Why am I writing about this? The couple across the street, having raised and married off their children, sold the house, and are moving out-of-state. We understand. We (also empty nesters) have talked about moving someplace cooler, more seasonal, or closer to this one or that one from time to time.
More than likely, we are planted here. I’m nesting again—planting a garden (that’s another blog topic), growing orchids, getting bids for a new driveway, and pursuing my pay list with vigor. We have family here, friends, my writing connections, and our lives.
The good thing is that the neighbors sold to a young couple and not to a rental company. The bad thing is that they sold at all. Change. I suspect it’s a good one for our neighbors, and I wish them well, but it’s jarring for us. Over the years, they have become more than neighbors, they’ve become friends. People who can be counted on to watch the house, get the mail, and help out in a crisis. I’ll miss them. A lot.
I remember a long time ago, the hospital I was working for was sold to one of the big corporations. Changes, many of them drastic, rolled through the place in unrelenting waves, encompassing every facet of organization life. It became apparent that it was easier for me to leave and have complete change than to watch what I helped build be torn apart a brick at a time. I experienced all the elements of grieving.
That is what’s happening now. Having identified our loss at an emotional level, Steve and I looked around, counted the good things, and planted more perennials.