We’ve been slowly sorting through our belongings. Files. Books. Clothes. Toys.
Honestly, I’m a little sad about a few things. Mostly, toys for the girls, which is probably silly, but it’s how I feel. There are things like their kitchen set, certain dolls or stuffed animals, or their recent Christmas gifts that we can’t take. (Don't worry, Mom, we will take Clifford with us). We will re-accumulate toys and play things in Guatemala, but for now, I can only see what they’re not going to have right in front of us and that’s what I’m struggling with.
Officially, being less attached to stuff is one of our values and motivations for doing all this. I'm a sentimental person, and my memories of Ellie with certain toys won't change. But there’s a part of me that wonders if my girls will somehow miss out on some childhood milestones or memories in the US by being in Guate. Silly ones, but no less true.
I know that the benefits outweigh the sacrifices we will make (bilingual! living in another culture! more family time!), but I can’t help but think of this new, redirected childhood my girls have ahead.
Instead of having little buddies that they grow up with since infancy, they will experience people coming and going throughout their lives. I’ve moved enough to know that I’m strong and resilient and have learned to dive right in as a result of being mobile. And yet, I envy those who have years of history with their local friends and family. I don’t have that.
I have good, kindred spirit friends who live all over the world, and when we get to see each other it’s always such a blessing. Unfortunately, those visits are often rare, and it’s not the same as living near each other, experiencing life together on a regular basis, actually building friendships beyond the occasional visit from out of town. Not to mention the community we will leave behind in Fresno.
It may sound overly dramatic, but these are things I am slowly releasing. I just remind myself that there are amazing experiences in our future, and then I take a deep breath and release my hold on our "stuff" just a little bit more.