Tag: moving

Guest Post: 14 years older, a whole lot more wiser….

Written by my husband Rod


In May of 1997 I moved my family to the Chicago area for a job change. It was a major change from the life in Kettering Ohio…Paige was 3 and Josh was 5. We were leaving behind all our family, all our friends…everything we knew to be ‘ours’. But the opportunity was a good one, and it had potential to open doors for lots of other opportunities down the road.

The company I was moving to join was called 21st Century Telecommunications. The owner of that organization was named Glenn and he had put together a business plan and model that would set the stage for all the cable companies to follow..even to this day. While I’d only been to Chicago one other time…I decided this was an opportunity that just couldn’t be passed up.

Now 14 years later…I’m about to move my whole family across the country to a new location, Myrtle Beach. Many things are different…many not so much. The owner of this company also happens to be named Glenn…and happens to be the same owner of the first company I moved for! Now Josh and Paige are 19 and 17 (and one of them is not moving with us), but Miranda and Kaity are now 4 and 3. We’re leaving behind a lot of family, friends…and familiar stuff, but the opportunity is again a great one.

The 2 biggest changes in my life are my wife and my smarts. I’ve learned a lot in these 14 years. Not all of it has been good…but most of it has. I’ve learned to trust God more and my own abilities less. I’ve learned that there are good people out there…sometimes you just have to take a risk on them..and sometimes you’ll get burned. I’ve learned that His ways…are always better than mine. And I’ve learned about love. One of the greatest gifts God has given me is my wife Kelly. She brought an element of trust and happiness that I never knew I was missing. Our life is made up of all things crazy…but in all things, we do it together. This move is a major life change and challenge…but we’re totally in it together. While there are lots of friends and family that we will miss…my best friend in the world will be right next to me.

That, along with learning to trust in God to lead me where I need to go…is all I need.

So…goodbye Chicago…I’m sure we’ll visit often. It’s been a good 14 years, but it’s time for the next phase to start.

Now it feels real / my true self

I keep saying that. Now it feels real. I said it two weeks ago when my home for the last 8.5 years, crammed with clutter, office supplies, toys, and life, was empty. I said it when Rod and I received mail at our Conway address last week and slept on our bed in a brand new room.

I have said a dozen times this week as we’ve accomplished “last” after “last”…the girls’ last Rainbow class at church, our last playdate at their BFFs’ house, the last time eating here or there, or even today, just my last Friday waking up here.

Yesterday, Miranda asked me at two separate times, “Is the doggie coming with us?” and “Are Gramma and Papa coming with us?” I don’t know how she knows to ask these things, but she caught me off guard. The answer to both is no (the dog story is heartbreaking to us and one I’m avoiding, but our Sammie Dee is going to be in very loving hands).

Tonight is our See YouS Later party. I don’t now how to say goodbye. Every corner of this locale has a memory for me. My identity starts with being a Capriotti, living in Chicago Heights, going to Bloom Trail, dreaming of and attending University of Illinois, working at Steger mainstays like Marvell Bakery and Dari Whip and Scott’s U-Save. I love that I have grown in an area that is diverse and working class and and has the best pizza and is loyal to constantly disappointing sports teams.

But now it’s time to go.

What I won’t leave, what I can’t leave, is my circle. I was having dinner with my BFF the other night and waxing weepy about the friends I have here. My whole childhood was spent trying to fit in, trying to be one of the cool kids. It’s only in my 30s, since becoming a mom, that I stopped feeling that way, that I let down my guard, stopped trying so hard, showed my true self, and forged the most amazing friendships – some new, some renewed. (Note the picture. One of my friends gave me the hair…um…thing…in honor of the royal wedding. I wore it in the moving truck. That’s just how I am…) I am surrounded by women who add greatly to my life in so many ways. I dread the thought of leaving that behind. I can hardly swallow the thought of having my dream kitchen in Carolina but, at least for now, no one to drop by for coffee or lunch or a movie after the kids are in bed. I hate the thought of lost observations and one-liners that come with doing life together on a daily basis.

But I know, I know, I know that friends who are family have bonds that transcend distance. That is what life on the road has taught on me these past few years. I have friends in Tennessee who just suffered a losses in their families, others in Texas battling cancer this year…and somehow, through the power of words shared digitally and bonds that lie deep, we’ve been able to go through those things together.

I look forward to forging ahead with my best friend, my husband. This will be good for us. We’ll figure things out together, from where to go to church to where the pizza is tolerable. We’ll find the corners of our new world and give our kids years worth of amazing memories and joy. And the things that are in Chicagoland, the ‘things’ that matter, will not be left behind.

Things I discovered yesterday

– red wildflowers on the side of the road

– a fascination with mountains, and how in the world did ‘they’ get those roads through there?

– the stockyboy in Kroger’s did not know what I meant when I asked for the location of the “pop.” So, all those cliches about what soda/pop/Coke is called around the country areTRUE.

– Kroger puts things in weird places

– I will not be shopping regularly in Kroger, but I am looking forward to checking out Food Lion.

– the nearest store to my new home is 10 miles away

– most of those 10 miles are down a country road with little traffic and no stoplights, so it’s not so bad…

– but getting ‘carry-out’ for dinner seems like not a good option

– the term HOA gets used a lot around here. I’m not really a fan of Homeowner’s Associations, and since we’re renting, I feel a little like the teenagers who everyone is waiting to do something stupid. Hopefully, that passes. And speaking of passes, at least having an HOA also means we have a POOL! (with, ahem, pool passes).

– a frog on my front door and another in my garage

– 4 neighbors who stopped by to say hi, two with little kids who are looking for friends (YAY)

– I am not too ashamed to cry in the middle of Walmart from the sheer nervousness and loneliness that comes with this big, big life change

– we did not leave any towels out to use until we unpack. Yeah… (back to Walmart today!)

– our new home is beautiful and spacious and so is the surrounding neighborhood. Our yard backs up to the woods. We have tons of closets and great light…

– but for the unforeseeable future, I will be that annoying Carolina person who refers to a different place as “back home.”

– this won’t really be home anyway until our girls get here
(and I can cook dinner for everyone)

– the word Chicagolina. I made it up. Isn’t it great?

– I can lift stuff that’s way heavier than KK & Randa’s combined 65 pounds. It’s been awhile, but I am still strong and capable, and especially at this time in life, I am grateful for that.

– My husband is my best friend, and he is enough. We laughed so hard yesterday. He didn’t make fun of me for the odd moments when I cried. And all that is to be discovered here, we will do together.