"Look!" my daughter said as the plane flew low enough to see the lights of New Jersey and New York. "Civilization!"
I couldn't have agreed more. It felt that way, anyway. We went "home" to New Jersey/New York/Connecticut over spring break and it was as if the 'real me' floated back into my body the moment the wheels slapped onto the runway. I don't belong where we live now. But the Northeast? The need to see the people and places I love made the slow crawl of disembarking torture. Really, I envy people who have moved a lot during their lives; I imagine the constant longing for a place isn't quite as bad.
I need a mere five pins to label a Florida map with the people and places I need in my life there. I need a large box of pins to label the tri-state area.
I'm back in Florida now and reflecting on the serious battery charge I received from ten days surrounded by friends, favorite locales and the general energy of the area. I had three malls within a ten-minute reach whenever I needed it. (I didn't need to go, but loved knowing I could!) I said what I wanted to say when I wanted to say it, because friends who are like family know me well enough to either understand where I am coming from or love me enough to not care that we disagree. I had endless access to amazing food establishments, yet sometimes was happy just to grab a coffee at an indie cafe. I explored new places despite having lived up there all my life. I enjoyed unexpected bagpipers in Port Authority to snowy winding roads in the Catskills.
Winding roads and a frigid reservoir in the Catskills, NY
It's all very different from Central Florida; the endless miles of newer, cookie-cutter buildings and homes, predictable store and restaurant chains, and rather conformist points of view. I know there are places in Florida I'd probably enjoy more, and hell...you can't beat palm trees, but I guess, for now, I have to learn to bloom where I'm planted.
The trip was bliss, really. Although, I do know the grass is always greener. I mean I had to remind myself after a day of traipsing through Manhattan that I hated every minute of rush hour, commuting, and sometimes rude people when I worked there. The snow was beautiful in the burbs, but I can say for certain that I do not miss shoveling it. We went to a play at my kids' former high school and instantly felt more engaged in a school building than I had since moving. But ask me how much I hated the gossipy, Queen Bee mom scene when we lived there!
More than anything else, I miss my friends. The way they all went out of their way to spend time with me only made me realize more how lucky I am to have them. They really are a life line through calls and social media. Hubby is lucky I love him so much--he was one of the few reasons my daughter and I got back on the plane. :)
So, does it get easier to move the more you do it?