When I was 5, my best friend, Nancy Donaldson moved. Nancy and I cried, clung to each other and promised we would never forget each other, but as she grew smaller and smaller in the distance waving from the back of her father’s Rambler, I was jealous. That’s right, jealous. I remember praying, “Dear Lord, please let me be able to move like Nancy did someday.”
And now… as of Saturday, I will have moved 18 times. Yes, 18 times. I think perhaps when it came to my prayer I should have been a little more specific with God.
Moving is not fun. Being in a new place IS fun, but moving is not. Finding boxes is not fun. Purging all sorts of strange items (ohhhh there’s all those batteries I bought and rebought over and over again), and trying to beg family members with promises of free pizza to help move and lift is not fun.
But as I get ready for move 18, I not only think of all the many times I packed and repacked and packed again, but also of all the people I have met, have known, have laughed with, cried with, parented with and shared life with. When I browse over all these memories, I realize I have had a rich life. I have known so many people; people from Oswego, from Babylon, from Huntington, Merrick, Bethpage, Florida, Wantagh, Bellmore, Brewerton, Syracuse, Liverpool, Mexico, and dozens of places in between. And I can’t imagine never knowing these people. It was all because of moving.
I am a big fan of saying, “Grow where you’re planted,” but in truth, it’s not just in the physical—yes, be at home where you move to, but also grow from the heart as well. That’s what happened to me. I grew through the care and love of others wherever I was planted and I am all the better for it.
And as I head off in yet another new direction, I think back to Nancy Donaldson and hope wherever she ended up in life, she too grew where she was planted.