Dearest Readers and Blog-friends,
First of all, happy Epiphany! I like the part in the story where the Three Wise Men go home “by a different route,” having been warned in a dream not to go back to King Herod. Secondly, we have some exciting family news.
We’re going to be moving to Glasgow!
Although 2012 was a really tough year, mostly due to the Dafter’s illness, it was also the year that a new employer came knocking at the door for Michael. He has accepted a new post and we will be moving to the Dear Green Place as soon as we can manage to do so.
Initially, when we discussed this with the Dafter, she was hoping to be back to school and rebuilding her life in Aberdeen. We were willing to try a weekly commute (Glasgow is about three hours from Aberdeen). Sadly, the Dafter is not much better and is still very far from being able to do schoolwork even at home. Given how stripped bare her life has become here, she’s very keen to start afresh in a new environment. It’s wonderful that the three of us are working together towards this new goal. I think one of our strengths is our closeness as a family, and we’re all very happy that we can stay together. We’ll also be closer to Our Son in Edinburgh.
Regular readers may remember that I was planning to take a leave of absence from my job at the start of this year. As it turned out, I left for good just before Christmas. (I received a fabulous leaving present – a voucher for knitting wool and supplies!) I was wondering how I would feel about it now. Someone was recently very concerned that I would suffer from lack of intellectual stimulation “just” looking after the Dafter. The truth is, I’m very relieved not to have the strain of being away two or three days a week, with the Dafter so unwell. I was finding the stress of the situation so great that I was really struggling to concentrate at work. My professional identity has always been important to me, but set against the well-being of my family, its importance has faded very significantly. So, to my own surprise, I’m now a full-time carer and homemaker, and glad to be so. These considerations were on my mind when I wrote my post on Obedience – little knowing how my theory would be put to the test!
We’re busying ourselves with preparing our flat to go on the market, we hope by the end of February. There’s lots to do in the way of fixing things and decorating – as usual, we’re thinking, “Why didn’t we do this ages ago so we could enjoy it?” Such is life. And there’s a LOT to do in the way of sorting and sifting possessions. The fact that I’ve become the holder of the family archive in recent years is a pleasure and also a responsibility. The strange thing is, I’ve had such a feeling of peace about the whole move. I’m not so naive as to assume there won’t be days I’m tearing my hair out. But it seems right.
I’m hoping to be able to keep blogging in my usual haphazard way. (No, I won’t be taking Before and After photos of the sorting process!) From a blogging perspective, I was very relieved that we didn’t end up moving to England – I can still keep Writing from Scotland. In the next few months, I’m going to be sure to arrange time to myself and to meet friends, and I’ll make sure I get out of the house for a walk every day that I can. Both Michael and the Dafter are completely supportive in helping me to have fun and a bit of a life of my own.
When Michael accepted the job that took us from Illinois to Aberdeen in 1992 (the fulfilment of years of planning), I had a card by Mary Engelbreit with this illustration:
I’m not sure where the card has gone, but I have a bookmark with the same illustration. Moving to Glasgow isn’t nearly the leap that leaving the US for Scotland was, but the message is still relevant.
Michael, the Dafter and I are very much looking ahead to a fresh start and new adventures. I hope you’ll find sharing them with me interesting, whatever they turn out to be!