There is a certain amount of trepidation inevitably associated with an impending change in life circumstances. In my case, at least I’ve had enough advance notice to make some plans. I have two more weeks of working left, after which my job will be eliminated and we will be moving more than 600 miles away.
The specter of unemployment looms large. When I am feeling sorry for myself, I try to remember that others are not so lucky. Many have life changes thrust upon them without any notice at all. A family member dies, you end up in a catastrophic wreck on the freeway on the way to work, the boss summarily fires you, a storm destroys your house. These kinds of things happen suddenly, so I need to be grateful that at least we’ve known this one was coming for a while now.
I try to talk myself into a positive attitude. “It could be worse,” I say. “At least we have a place to go. It’s all relative.” Or, in this case, it’s all relatives.
I love my wife’s family dearly, really I do. When we’re up there, they treat me like visiting royalty. But living with them? Oh dear.
My wife and I are accustomed to our privacy. It’s just the two of us in a big old rental house in the center of town. Okay, so it’s a very small town way out in the desert and the house is being eaten up by termites. But we have two bathrooms, and there are many times when my wife is occupying one and I am occupying the other. His and hers thrones.
“It’s not so bad,” I was telling my mother on the phone the other night. “There’s a bathroom just outside the church next door and I already have a key.” I have visions of running across the lawn when a diarrhea attack hits at two in the morning. On the plus side, I recently learned that my cell phone has a flashlight on it.
Gone are the days of leaving the bathroom door open, as well as the days of prancing back and forth to the shower in the altogether.
It’s alright though. We will be living with my mother-in-law, but she bakes terrific pies and enjoys discussing the Bible even more than I do. And she actually reads this blog, which is more than I can say for my own family.
My 17 year old niece and her little daughter, who is about to celebrate her first birthday, live just a few miles away. My niece is attending the local community college and I hear that the little one has new day care arrangements that are about to start. Um, that would be us.
Auntie and uncle are on the way. This fact became jarringly real to me today when my wife and I, lazing in bed of a Sunday morning, actually had an extended conversation about what delectables the finicky grandniece might eat if we turned them into finger foods by cutting them in small pieces, and whether we ought to cut the crusts off the bread before serving her cheese toast. Next thing I know, we’ll be discussing toilet training.
And no, I’ve never changed a diaper in all my life. Something tells me I’m about to learn how, though.