Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Happy Place

It's the middle of the night and naturally, I can't sleep. Zeke has been up during the night for the past week -- he's cutting 4 molars at once and they're brutal -- but tonight that's not even the reason I'm up. I dosed his bedtime bottle with tylenol, advil and a little dimetapp (his nose is running and he's coughing), and I guess it worked. Of course, now that I've written that, watch him wake up and start screaming in exactly 7.9 seconds.

I've been trying to process the changes that are coming in the next four weeks. I'm starting the job as of March 1, and just to preserve what little sanity I have left, I'd like to be in Denver about a week before that. So I have 4 weeks to get my house rented and pack up my shit and move all of it, plus 2 cars, to Denver. In February. Meaning that inevitably, some massive storm system (or several of them -- why be optimistic?) will hit the Rockies and its mountain passes, shutting down all traffic and commerce, and I'll have my stuff some time in late April.

I'm not feeling down or pessimistic -- just overwhelmed. I'm making lists and cleaning closets and getting estimates and getting our tax refund (which will be a massive help), but the speed with which I have to get so much accomplished is freaking me out.

Some people, when they're on mental overload, talk of going to a "happy place." Thoughts of sitting on a warm beach, hammock swaying in the breeze, the smell of Coppertone wafting into their nostrils, sipping a cold Corona.

But I've decided that Denver is my happy place. So I'm doing all of this to get there.

A friend of mine came up with the concept.

"Think of it," she said. "You get to go to this place with good job prospects and you've got friends there and family there and activities that you love and it's not too far from your parents, so they can see Zeke when they want, and the cost of living is reasonable and the schools are good and everything is great. It's a ready-made happy place."

And she's right. I don't believe in fate or destiny, but there is something remarkable about how it's all working out. I got the job that I wanted, in an economy that couldn't be shittier for jobs, and I get to work with my best friend. My kid has a spot reserved in the daycare I wanted him in, without having to get on a waitlist. I'll be living in a duplex that went up for rent around the time I got the Denver interviews. The duplex is across the street from Kathleen's house. It's a 10 minute (max) drive to work. It's also a block off a main street that has a funky concern venue right there, and as a way to appease neighbors, the club gives 4 tickets to every show to people living within a block of the street. Two of my first cousins live in Denver, and I've always been close to them. One has two small children close to Zeke's age. So he's already got a ready-made peer group. Via the miracle of Facebook, I also discovered that at least 5 friends from college, 1 friend from Atlanta, and 2 or 3 friends from high school live in Denver.

That is the best part. One of the hardest things about living here is how isolated I've felt and how difficult it has been to grow a network of friends, especially going through my first pregnancy alone and having no posse to lean on and no group of little posse monkeys for Zeke to roam with.

All of that changes in 4 weeks. In addition to being able to work with Kathleen again, and live across the street from her, and have her munchkins play and go to school with my munchkin (and possible future munchkins), I already have a posse, including family, that I can call to go out for dinner or run errands or lean on for a favor. And they can do the same for me. And I'll be a 2 hour flight from my parents and brothers, so instead of crazy ass travel that involves major jet lag and major expense, making frequent visits financially and physically prohibitive, we can pop over for long weekends.

The thought of it makes my heart skip a beat, and takes me to my happy place. The tasks at hand don't seem so insurmountable. Because I'm going to my Happy Place.


  1. Anonymous10:32 AM

    Can I send my spawn with you to Colorado? I'm so tired of being a parent right now...


  2. I can imagine how overwhelmed you feel, but how wonderful to know that the end result is your happy place.

    Sherice - Send him here, it's not so far. One more isn't going to make it any worse and the kids would probably love the distraction of some cute little kid that they don't hate like only siblings can hate.

  3. As someone who finally found my Happy Place after 7 long years in purgatory, I'm commenting to reinforce that it will be worth it! GOOD LUCK!! Keep your eyes on the prize and all that. I am so happy for you and cannot wait to read about your fabulous life once you get there!