Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Dear Fear: Scram! And Hello to New House and Chapters in Life!

What's up with fear? It's such a sneaky little bugger.  It creeps in and tries to hold us back from so damn much:  starting and following through with our biggest dreams, accepting and flowing with change, trying new things, receiving things we never thought we'd have.  Fear is sly.  Tricky. It disguises itself as rational or safe.  Fear settles.  It keeps us where we are, convinces us we are comfortable and that things are "good enough." It distracts us and says
"You Can't."
"Who do you think you are?"
"Why bother?"
"Think of all the things that could go wrong...aren't you comfortable just the way you are?"
 It seems that when fear creeps in my life, it always takes me at least a little while of feeling paralyzed by it before I realize what's going on enough to ignore it so I'm not held back in my same old life grooves, never to move forward.

Dear Fear,
I've recognized you these last few weeks.  I've even let you to stay awhile.  I've been hospitable and let you take part in our daily activities.  However, I'm ready for you to go.  I want to be present and joyful about this next chapter in life. In fact, I really wish you would stay away for good now.  You seem to make everything else in life seem so much harder.  Impossible even.  There's no place for you in my life if I'm ever going to live the life I know I'm meant to live.  No place at all.  So, I send you on  your way and I hope to find many other things to fill your void: gratitude, goals, love, people and things that inspire, and friends that support, encourage and believe in me.    

We signed on a house last night!  In Bend, Oregon.  Yup, things are getting real now.  Since we are currently living on the east side of the country, my husband and I had to fly out separately to look at houses and get a feel for our new home.  Him first.  Then me.  Oh wow, what a process!  I never thought finding a house that I'd spend the next many years of my life in would be so difficult.  Not just because the market in Bend is crazy right now but because somehow, in this process of selecting a home for my family, I've let it define me. I've had to really wrestle with some old ideas of who I am and what I've always imagined for my life and I've had to come to terms with the ever present truth that CHANGE is INEVITABLE. Change is constant.  It can't be avoided.  With life.  With US.  Our beliefs. The way we see the world.  Our children.  The places we end up.  Our jobs.  Change is what life is.  We change.  The things and people around us change.  We can either flow with it, accept it and eventually embrace it or we can fight it tooth and nail and let fear tell us to resist.

I'm ready to accept and embrace.

I'm ready to accept that sometimes what is best for us isn't what we expected. Sometimes, like with the purchase of our new house and moving to Bend, it is MORE than we expected.  It is pretty neat to see how life unfolds just as it is meant to be.  The house we signed on is really like no house I ever saw myself settling in for the bigger stretch of raising my kids.  On paper it fits more than most of the criteria we wrote down on our wish list for a home but in my mind and from looking at it all from the outside, it has taken some readjusting and shift in perspective to get used to the idea. We made a wish list to work with before our home search so working with our realtors would be easier.  On our list was (not in order): a bigger yard, space for the kids to play, a room for each kid and room to have family and friends visit, community, good schools, a house that would be good for entertaining and be the house our kids and their friends would want to hang out at, closeness to running trails, lots of natural light, TREES, and a few other dream things that I knew weren't going to be a for sure thing like charm, front porch, etc.  I've struggled so much with this decision but this is the house we kept coming back to for what fits our family the best even though it took me some time to see it as the house that we would ultimately decide on.

 I'm ready to be happy and stop second guessing it.

Before making an offer, I took a short run along the river trail that is steps from the house.  I tried to soak it all in the best I could. I tried to be calm and not let fear stop me in my tracks.  I'm so thankful for the friends I have in my life that have helped me process these big changes.  One dear friend and old neighbor in Portland was there on that still morning in such a perfect way.  She spoke words that were just what I needed to hear:

"Sometimes over thinking makes it too hard.  If you really think this is your first choice then you should go for it.  If your gut say otherwise, listen to it.  But if fears says otherwise, tell it to off and move forward.  If you let fear make the decisions in the past, you wouldn't have had your wonderful time in North Carolina."

Our house (as soon as closing goes through...that's a waiting process in itself) is bigger than I ever wanted.  It has more space and rooms that we need but not too much that we won't use it.  It is steps away from the river trail system along the Deschutes River where we can run for miles and miles on dirt trail and never have to get in our car.  Although I never saw myself as wanting a community pool or fitness area that comes with a HOA, I'm embracing that too because I know my kids will love it.  There is no old charm, front porch, or deck with a view.  No small town feel like where we live now unless you count walking .7 miles to the neighborhood store/coffee shop but we will be 4 miles from downtown Bend, a city of under 80,000 and just under 3 miles to the popular Old Mill area.  There is really  no real suburbia in Bend...more neighborhoods but definitely more of a suburb feel with where we will live.  But hey, that's a good place for families and eventually we will be at a place in life where living in an old charmer in the heart of a small city or town will make more sense (financially, space, resources, etc.) and serve our needs.  It seems that all the things we wanted for our home and family are coming to be even if it has taken a different form than I imagined.  Some of the best things in my life have happened this way! This is one of the things I love the most about life and we almost always gain wisdom and new insight in the process of shifting and accepting.

We have about a month left here in Asheville, North Carolina. I'm excited!  Today, I'm bagging up my fear and second guessing and I'm setting my sights on the present and the many wonderful things to look forward to!  I'm receiving and giving thanks.

Video of my first trail run near our new house (literally a minute away):

My morning run before making an offer on our new home wasn't much of a run but it did give me a chance to soak things up a bit.  

Intentions for My Now:  

  • Be present and soak up these last weeks in a place I love so so much.  
  • Accept change and find the good in it without resistance.
  • Give thanks for life and this new house, place to live, last year of travel....everything.  Life is good.  So much to be thankful for.
  • Be open for new opportunities.  
  • Breathe.
  • Gear up for Grandma's Marathon in 2 weeks and allow myself to be where I am.  The past few weeks have been much harder than I expected when it comes to training for a marathon.  I'm not sure what I was thinking.  Ha! But I'm going to make the most of it and enjoy my time in Duluth with one of my best friends at an awesome marathon.  
  • Think positive and expect the best!!  
  • Continue dreaming and believing.  
  • Give my son an awesome Ninjago party tomorrow! 



  1. Excited for you guys. Sounds like the River Rim area?
    Love you're pep talk on kicking fear in the teeth.
    "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but of Power, Love and Self-Discipline..." great words!

    1. Yes, River Rim area! Good job! Thank you for your words...good words indeed.

  2. Just thought I'd let you know you've inspired me, and my family. We love adventure, but we've been pretty rooted for the last 7 years. Hubband is headed to Afghanistan in a few weeks, and last night we decided when he comes back he's going to look for an overseas billet with the people he works for. Because, life's an adventure. Live it as much as you can. You helped remind us to be brave.

    1. Hi you! This is so exciting!! I'm so happy for you. And t hank you for your words. I need reminded to be brave all the time. Sometimes life is just terrifying when it comes to making big changes and leaping for things we want. How long is he in Afghanistan??

    2. He'll be there for a year, as long as he doesn't get extended (which we're kind of expecting to happen).

      Big changes are MONDO terrifying, at least when it comes to making those changes for my kids.

      I also forgot to add I'm SO jealous you're moving to Bend. It's grown so much since I lived out there, and it's really quite the awesome city these days! You'll love it there!

    3. A year?! That is so long! Thinking of you. Probably nothing compared to what it could be but still hard. You'll have to come visit in Bend!

  3. So jealous of your change. In fact, I've had to not read this blog as much because I'm so jealous...yes, working on my own issues and I want some change in my life. My husband does not. Funny the struggles we all have ... how completely different they are ... but the same emotions nonetheless. Best of luck with the ninjago party and wishing your son a happy bday!

    1. Ah, Hi Janalyn. so good to hear from you as always. You know, I get this feeling. Definitely makes things easier to be on the same page as your husband...this is hard. And yes, same emotions...we really do all struggle and face road blocks in life and it is so nice to know we aren't alone. Thinking of you and hoping you get that change you crave.

  4. I hope you love living in it! Sometimes we are surprised :) Wishing you a smooth and joyful transition!

    1. Thank you Marjorie! I have a feeling we will love it! The things that are best for us don't always come in packages we expected.

  5. Love your list of intentions. It's so helpful when I write stuff like that down. Punch fear in the face!! I have GA (general anxiety), so exercise plays a big role in keeping it at bay. Good luck with all your life changes. We are applying to dental schools this week, many on the east coast, so we may be switching sides of the country like you. It's excited to think, but I love it here too and am VERY comfortable. Take care.

    Jessica @ SweatIsMySanity.blogspot.com

    1. It is so so helpful for me too when it comes to writing out goals, intentions, gratitude, etc.! Yes, on exercise! Good luck with dental schools!

  6. It looks like you're going to have the most beautiful trail runs. What more could a runner ask for? I'm predicting that you're going to grow to love your new town as much as the other two you've lived in.

    1. Thanks Char. You know, I think your prediction is correct. I've always found a way to love where I am...no matter where it is. :) I've also been pretty lucky to live in some awesome places!

  7. Exciting times! Wishing you peace with your decision and happy years in your new home.

  8. I am so happy for you - if I could get my family to move I would choose OR in a heartbeat!!!! Bend is beautiful!
    I will look for you in Duluth. Where are you staying?

  9. Can I be your neighbor? This sounds so fantastic. Just need to keep telling myself, "We're happy in Portland. We're happy in Portland." Ahhh...Bend. Have I already mentioned our favorite restaurant is there? You have to check out Joolz if you haven't been there yet. Good job fighting off that fear.

  10. This all sounds so familiar and so fantastic! I would love to see pictures of your house if you ever feel up for sharing - I love living vicariously through you! I recognise your fear and your hesitation but I agree - go forth and ban fear. Life is an adventure. I recognised recently that I was looking to other people's lives (what I thought they were about - I suppose) and was envying them. I've come to reliase that that is no way to be - that I only feel that way because of some dissatisfaction with where I'm at. And i need to fix that. And I AM fixing it so that feels much better. Thank you for ALWAYS giving me stuff to chew on Amanda!

  11. I just found your blog and started following you. I live in NC and think about moving out west to OR. Such a beautiful place. As stressful as the house buying and moving sounds, it seems like you found an amazing place for your adventures with your family.