We spent what was supposed to be our last night in San Diego at the emergency room. I was only two and a half months pregnant and it looked very much like this pregnancy was going to end the way the last two had. With failure and heartache and a lot of questions no one had really been able to give us any answers to. My parents watched Harp and Indy in a now completely empty house, trying their best to entertain them with the toys we’d left unpacked for the first few days in Indiana and the trek across the space between it and California. Four hours later they could only tell me at that moment, on that ultrasound, everything looked okay…for now.
That 9 week old smudge on the screen was Hank. Ultimately, it all worked out but as I sat in that waiting room, I couldn’t help but think back on how many people had rallied around us. One of my dearest friends basically packed our entire bedroom into boxes, ribbing me about the sheer amount of hangers you acquire when you have kids and leaving funny notes on the packing boxes. Our other best friends dragged their kids over to keep mine entertained and then went to work moving furniture, carefully wrapping mugs in paper and taping spice lids so we wouldn’t start with broken dishes and a fine dusting of garlic powder on everything we own. Still more friends had driven three hours to help us with a garage sale the weekend prior. In that moment, I very deeply questioned our decision to leave everything behind.
The number one question people ask us when they hear we moved to Central Indiana from San Diego is “why would you do a dumb thing like that?” Most people are joking but they all seem pretty genuinely interested.
We weren’t doing a great job of making it work, financially, in San Diego. I was spending my nights freelance writing to try and fill the void between what we owed and what we were bringing in. Guy was working for a non-profit and interviewing every other week. Every single time he’d be one of two candidates and end up getting passed over because the number of servers he managed was smaller than what he would be overseeing at the new job. Despite 10 years experience and an extensive knowledge, he was struggling to find a company willing to take a chance on him.
Around that same time, we started seriously thinking about what we wanted for our family. Ultimately, we decided we wanted more babies. More space. More financial freedom. And hopefully, sometime in the near future a little homestead in the woods away from the constant fray of modern life. We couldn’t have those things in California and so we left and we miss it. I still can’t look at pictures without getting that little hitch behind my sternum, without an urge to turn my head and look away. A photo of the two older kids sitting on our porch at the house on Palm has been responsible for more early morning tears than I feel comfortable admitting. Still, I know we made the right choice. Inching slowly toward big dreams and lofty goals, all while missing the outline of the Lagunas against a rising sun and the embrace of all the people who love us most.