A house is not a home

For the last couple days, I’ve shared my home with five men. Javier, Miguel, Roger, Bob, and Jose, “professional international movers,” did what they do best. They moved right into my home, grabbed up everything from my bras and panties to Max’s prescription Nexium, and moved right out. I’m left with the Macbook, dog and kitty supplies, the dog, cat, and two suitcases.

Even after the fellows carted off the last of the load, my house still wreaked of cardboard boxes and packing tape. The sight of an empty house brought not only a flood of tears, but also a phone call to Max, who is still in Hawaii. Normally, I’m resistant to the ills of his hectic travel schedule, but this time the stress got to me.

“Your trip to Hawaii couldn’t have come at a worse time,” I wailed.

Max isn’t use to hearing me sob, and I could tell it shook him up a little.

“I know, sweetness. I wish I could be there. I’m sorry.”

Just hearing his voice and a little empathy soothed my agitated spirit. It has been a rough week—saying goodbye to old coworkers, friends, and my hair dresser. I also got a call from my sister, who had to tell me just how hard my father was taking this move.

“Everything is going to be fine,” I told her sternly. “I’m just moving away for a few years, not dying on you all!” I said.

“Well, you have to understand,” she said. “I can only imagine what dad is feeling. If this were my daughter…” she began to say, until I interrupted.

“Why can’t you all stop thinking about yourselves? Everything about your life-- about dad’s life-- is going to be exactly the same the day after I move as it was the day before. The only difference is that you’ll be getting more phone calls and e-mails from me while I’m away. On the other hand, EVERYTHING about MY LIFE is changing. I’m leaving friends, family, my career, my country… Do you really have to make this all about how you are feeling?”

I know I was being harsh. The stress of leaving is tougher than I expected. I’m never someone who likes to get emotional. Tears are always fought back. But these days, weepiness comes a lot quicker.

All of this emotion had one positive affect. This morning, I got an e-mail from Max. He’s decided to cut his trip short and is returning on the red-eye tonight.

“You mean more to me than any job,” he said. “I need to be home with my family at this time.”

An empty house notwithstanding, I hope once my husband gets back, I’ll feel home again.


Fabi Yvette said...

I hope so, too....

Thinking of you!

ms chica said...

I'm visiting via Egan's blog and my alter-ego Patches. Just wanted to offer up a little sister support for having a mate on the road. I can't imagine what it's like preparing to baptize yourself in a foreign country, but I do know what is like having a mate far away when you need that familiar companionship. It's a difficult transition. I wish you the best.

kenju said...

You are perfectly justified in being weepy or emotional. Max is a sweetheart for coming home early.

utenzi said...

Max is so wonderful for you, Diane. It's great that you found one another.

Bluepaintred said...

ack! I think I would go insane watching some stranger pack up my stuff. I'm so glad you an Max have each other!

running42k said...

Keep posting like this, I am sure that the release helps.

I am certain that in a month we read about how much you love Germany and you will read this post and laugh.

Sara said...

I love that Max. You've got a keeper. I can certainly empathize about the life changes. I'm a bit overwhelmed with mine at the moment, and while not nearly as big as yours, I know how you feel. Take care and I can't wait to read about more adventures!

mrsmogul said...

When I was in London I thought I would be there a year...it turned out to be FIVE years! I was so homesick and realized thE USA is the best place to live!!! My friend moved from NJ to Germany and she did not know the language at all so it was difficult for her. Anyway, it will be exciting but just remember you don't get free refills and water in restaurants! :)

Me said...

YAY Max!:) And yes, you are right. I had the same reaction when people would try to guilt trip me for moving. :)