We are leaving in four days. Thankfully we're not moving and won't be moving for almost two more years. I like the thought of moving and the excitement of something new, but the actual moving is terrible.
Traveling is also terrible, but it's terrible on a much smaller scale.
I'm always excited when contemplating change. I like to ride roller coasters, I wanted to own a bullet bike when I was younger (I wouldn't mind one now, but I'm sadly much too responsible), and skydiving seems like a great idea. Change is something that mixes up normal life and gives me something to do other than work very hard to maintain the optimal flow of household life. Change gives me a break. I look forward to change.
As soon a change gets put on the schedule, I start counting down to it. One of my favorite things about getting pregnant is figuring out the schedule of when the baby's due, when get to go to London for appointments, and when I leave and return from medevac. Brandon thinks I'm sick. Everyone has their quirks, I reply to him.
I can hardly wait for the change to happen, but I still have to live my life while anxiously awaiting for the next change. I love when we find our our next post as it means planning and anticipating the next change. I hate when we find out our next post because then the timer starts ticking in the back of my head. I can turn down the volume, but the countdown doesn't go away until it has finished.
A three-month medevac is not such a big change as moving, but it's still a good-sized disruption in our schedule. I began planning this summer and tried to get everything done possible to make this week less painful. One has to laugh, however, when there's any attempt to make packing 'less painful.' It's like trying to make trans-Atlantic flights or childbirth less painful. There's some reduction of pain (hello, epidural) possible, but as a general percentage of the overall pain, the reduction is not very significant.
After about a week of sorting baby clothes, finding pacifiers and bottles, making lists, and packing up fall clothes, I couldn't find anything else to do. The two half-filled suitcases have been sitting forlornly in the corner of my room ever since.
So I returned to normal life, all the time hearing that clock ticking in the back of my mind. We have started school, played with friends, spent hours swimming in the pool, and gone to parties. As the departure date loomed closer and closer, I keep frantically wondering what I needed to to do get ready to go. But there wasn't anything. So we just pretended that life was completely normal all while counting down the months, then weeks, then days. Three months. Two months. Six weeks. Two weeks. Ten days. And now four.
On Friday the chaos descends as I wash laundry, fold laundry, pack laundry, gather school books, pack school books, weight suitcases, count suitcases, and wonder what it is I'm forgetting. On Friday the change will gather momentum, building in intensity, stress, and anxiety until Monday morning arrives and we finally reach the moment of change. Tashkent will be gone, to be replaced with Raleigh and we will have changed. The countdown will ring its completion, and life will wind down again to return to its normal rhythms. Change will have lost its appeal, and normal will be what I want most in the world. Being in the same place and doing nothing exciting at all will the best thing that has ever happened it me. The thought of change will be utterly repugnant.
Until I forget, as I always do, the pain that accompanies change. Then I'll start looking forward to the next one.