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Life is a series of beginnings and endings. We leave one job to start another; we quit cities, countries, or continents for a fresh start; we leave lovers and begin new relationships. What was the last thing you contemplated leaving? What were the pros and cons? Have you made up your mind? What will you choose?

Yes, I’ve had a lot of beginnings and endings. It all goes with accepting change rather than fearing it. Having to move from one place to another because of a breadwinner’s job (or both bread-winners) would be one of the hardest, I think. However, people usually don’t just move for a higher salary — they probably have other goals in mind, too. I often wonder how some of the military families I know  who have moved very frequently, manage it both physically and emotionally. It would be hard to have to start over every few years, make new friends, go to new schools, feel a part of a new community.

One of my goals when we moved into our home 28 years ago was that our four children would have a family home, a sense of belonging, and the same friends over many years. And it worked out just the way I planned. It gives me great pleasure now to see them and their friends gaining careers, getting married, having children, and becoming the adults I only glimpsed when they were in playing in elementary school, or getting into trouble in middle and high school. (No they may have been frisky, but not too much trouble.)

That makes the change we’re going to be required to make within the next 1-3 years hard. As we are growing older, it will be in our best interests to move into a slightly smaller place, especially because we have an acre yard that requires lots of work nearly year round. It’s getting hard for my husband particularly because he is an avid gardener, but the yard is becoming more of a burden than a haven.

We have two bedroom doors marked with kids’ heights at different ages. And in our youngest (30 this year) daughter’s room, her friends have also written little notes on the back of her door. How can I possibly paint over those to prepare the house for a new family?

I have to take my own advice, and that’s not always easy to do: nothing is as certain as change. That’s what life’s all about. My husband and I are preparing mentally for moving — getting used to the idea. Then we may be able to make the decision to do it; and then I may be able to paint the doors.