I’ve been voraciously reading John Green novels lately, ever since I was introduced via A Fault in Our Stars a couple of months ago. I love his dialogue and find it so witty and fresh that I end up awkwardly laughing to myself while reading. His characters are just so darn likable and not the norm, and I find that really refreshing. I just finished Paper Towns the other night and there was a quote that really resonated with me:
“I leave, and the leaving is so exhilarating I know I can never go back. But then what? Do I just keep leaving places, and leaving them, and leaving them, tramping a perpetual journey?”
I lived in the same town the first 18 years of my life, then moved to another for my four years of college, before moving in with my (then) boyfriend and making the decision to follow his journey into the military and all that that entailed (marriage! kids!) I’ve always seen myself as a really routine person. I like consistency and knowing what is coming next, yet when I really dig deep into myself, I think I thrive on change more than I thought. I’ve moved a lot in the past 12 years and I find that after awhile I start to crave this change. I love the spontaneous nature of it all. I like the act of finding a new home to live in and decorate, and new town to explore, and a new routine. I can start anew each time and be whoever I want to be.
Yet I dream of someday being able to have a home that will be my forever. To paint a wall or make a change that I know will be permanent. To settle into a town and be able to tell my children, “No, we won’t have to move anymore. This is IT” This last move was big for them, because it was the first in their memory where we uprooted everything they knew and changed their world. I’ve written before about raising my kids this way, but I also look forward to the day when our perpetual journey will be over.
I wonder though, when we DO settle down and find a forever spot, will I be sad? Will I get itchy at the three and a half year mark and start dreaming of new journey’s? I’m afraid that our constant moving and uprooting will create this need in me to always keep moving. I’ve seen the glory of how easy it is to adapt to losing friends and homes and town and schools, because always, always, we survive.
I didn’t know what I was getting into when I married my husband. What can I say? We were in love. We met in college, when he worked on the landscaping crew and I waited tables. When I think of him in my mind he is still that guy I met almost 15 years ago. I moved with him on faith alone, because I wanted him. I never cared about the details of what being a military wife entails, I just knew that if I had him by my side I would be happy. And I am. This life, a life of perpetual journey, of leaving places over and over, fits me.
This knowledge of myself, has been a journey in and of itself. I take all my thoughts in who I THOUGHT I was, and discover that I am not that person anymore. I’m not afraid of change, and I don’t need a crazy schedule. I just need myself, my family, and perhaps a good novel to read;)
Tell me, do you like a perpetual change, or do you have strong roots?
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