Moving for Love
This post originally appeared on our old site Born to be a Bride.
I’ve recently received a lot of correspondence from readers on the topic of moving, and I thought I’d write about my own experiences today. As someone who was raised in the same home from the age of three months (Mom still lives there, and I spent this weekend in my childhood bedroom!), I’ve never been one for change. College was exciting but challenging. I had a hard time being far away from my family and those Vermont winters were definitely … character-building to say the least.
But when I graduated and subsequently moved to Manhattan, I felt I had found my pace. I figured I’d fall in love eventually, and after marriage we’d buy a house on Long Island or (maybe) in Connecticut, the only two homes I’d really ever known, and settle there. (My dad lived in Connecticut for a portion of my childhood, so that state feels like home to me, too).
Meeting my New York City born-and-raised husband-to-be was a breath of fresh air. He was full of action and adventure, and while we loved getting out of dodge for romantic weekends, we experienced the city in every season. We went to red carpet events tied to Fashion Week, we huddled in little cafes in SoHo over coffee and gluten-free snacks. We walked around the untraveled streets after a blizzard on his birthday one year, and Central Park under a blanket of snow might be the most beautiful landscape I’ve ever seen.
Brooklyn became our place two years in, when my beloved bought an apartment on the water in DUMBO. I loved the shops and the parks right on the water, the mommies in Chloe boots and leggings pushing double-wide strollers with content bagel-eaters grinning as they passed me by. I loved the Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival and the food trucks offering kimchi concoctions you could never even dream up.
So, when Josh was offered a job in Dallas, TX, I was mixed. We were engaged, I was proud of him, and I wanted the best things for him. I also figured it would be an adventure–a chance for us to focus on our relationship without the complications of friends and loved ones buzzing in and out of our social calendar with or without notice. And it was!
We had a lot of fun in Dallas. We experienced a part of the country I’m not so sure I would have even seen otherwise. Chocolate-covered bacon at the state fair. A roadtrip to Kansas City. Barbecued everything… and the introduction of QUESO to our lives. (My thighs could have done without the queso, but I digress).
After a year (and a busy one at that! new puppy, first time in Europe, my wedding and all…) in Dallas, my husband’s career opportunities had opened up and Washington, DC was on the horizon. Again, I was mixed. I had gotten a great job in Dallas that I truly loved, I was surrounded by new friends who made me feel special and cherished and who were always ready with a laugh. What would I do in DC? Would we be able to afford an East Coast lifestyle? The questions swirled around me like a storm cloud, but we made the decision together, and it was the right one.
When you love someone, you love the whole person. You love the challenges, the flaws, the areas that call for compromise. I was torn about leaving the life we’d created in Texas, especially if it wasn’t to go home. But as a unit, you have to think about what is best for the group, and Josh being fulfilled in his career is definitely a good thing for all of us. Of course, being a four-hour drive from our families isn’t half bad either.
I am in yet another new city now, and trying to explain the logistics to people gets exhausting. At a routine doctor’s appointment last week, I had to write my address down as Dallas, since I was still on insurance in that state. At the pharmacy, I’m Gerson, and yet Studenroth, I live in Virginia, but I’m picking up medicine in Long Island. And so on.
People screw up their face in confusion when I give them my zip code (11743) because we haven’t reached our permanent apartment in Virginia yet, and I’m using my mom’s address. And then there’s this inevitable question: How long until you move again?
This is what I can tell you. My husband and I live in the DC metro area and we will for the foreseeable future. Yes, I am an independent, hard-working woman with a college degree and no, I am currently not employed in a full-time capacity. Yes, I feel a little displaced working for myself, in a home office, in a new city, with a busy husband. But I wouldn’t take back any of the choices or changes we have made. Josh and I just started writing our love story–and it will be a very long and good one indeed. I don’t know where we will be in ten years, or twenty, or more, but I know one thing for sure:
When I look back at our engagement and first year of marriage, it won’t be with an eye roll of, “We moved around a lot.” It will be with a wistful smile and the knowledge that we were charting our course. So, when people ask me “You moved from Brooklyn to Texas to DC— why??” I respond simply, “I moved for love.”