Good-bye Orcas, Hello World

While I was in Port Townsend, WA for my second MFA residency, Brian was wrapping up all things house related. Most of my time was spent dog-paddling through a sea of words and books and writers and writerly tools, but when I had a moment to spare, I worried about this guy. I wasn’t worried about how much he had to do–after all, Brian is nothing if not a workhorse. He’d get it done, I had no doubt.

No, I was worried because the idea of saying good bye to your home is emotional. I was trying to pin down what the emotion is, though and I struggle. 4XXX Orcas was a great house with a great yard, and a great community, but there are million of those out there. It is not, despite the real estate market, a unicorn. We’ve had several great homes, we’ll find another. So I guess it’s the memories, the nostalgia, that is emotional.

Brian says the Orcas years were our first really awesome years. They were the first years that we weren’t paycheck to paycheck. The Orcas years led us to begin the process of unearthing what it was that we were the most passionate about. Brian’s art changed substantially. I started writing, like for real, not just in the stolen minute in the early morning or on a random Sunday.

We aren’t losing those memories, we’re taking them with us. So, why is it so emotional?

I think it’s a funny mix of overwhelming gratitude, breathtaking apprehension and solid, grounding knowledge that you’ve taken a risk and that it was a brilliant decision.

Brian made this video, because how else do you really show what it’s like other than to see it?

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2 thoughts on “Good-bye Orcas, Hello World

  1. Brian and Sarah, I love the literalness of leaving; packing, emptying, clearing space, closing the door and driving away. Hugely symbolic. i am reminded of the day that my sisters and I emptied my mother’s home and moved permanently from the midwest. I had left almost 30 years before but selling and leaving the family home was closing a chapter in a whole different way. I chose to walk from that house to the edge of town. To the Iowa river. In walking as a child and later a teenager I had found freedom. Seemed like the appropriate way to say good bye.

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    1. I think how we say good bye is pretty symbolic– I’m terrible at it and I hate it and avoid it at all costs, which is pretty true to my personality. But a graceful goodbye is respectful and allows some closure. Brian sure did just that. Thanks for reading!

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