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Friday, June 1, 2012

No Reservations: Beginnings

This is hard. 

It's scary.  It's wildly intimidating.  It's like jumping into dark water unable to see the bottom and unsure when or if you'll hit it (who jumps into dark water? that's creepy!).  Think of standing on the edge of a cliff, looking down, waaaaay down to the water and then jumping after a countdown (countdowns always make me more nervous, and then I can't do it).  You hope you land safely, and most likely you will, but there's a chance you might not.  It's like that. 

It's like walking through an obstacle course blindfolded. 

But at least we have our arms free.

Our arms, heart, minds, and our legs; they are free and we have absolutely No Reservations!

Literally, we don't have any reservations, except for a hotel in June for a wedding.  But seriously, that's it.  Everything else...will fly by the seat of our pants.

This here mini-series of posts will aim to chronicle the journey that Geof and I are about to take.  We aren't just taking a long vacation and then returning to the grind.  We are leaving it pretty much all behind and just making it happen.  We are jumping the tracks, as Chuck said in a note on a prevous post. 

I'd like to call this here new series on Serious Case of the Runs: No Reservations

Thoughts and photos from the open road...

...and, of course, the trail.  I want to capture all the good stuff, the not-so-good stuff and everything in between.  I want to remember this experience always and I want to share it with our future someday, too.  I joke about saying one day, "Kids, did I ever tell you about the time your father and I spent the summer touring the country in that old truck and then moved 1700 miles away because it felt right?"  One day.  And, it's not a joke, it's f'real.

It's a slight break from the usual here on Serious Case of the Runs, but not by much.  There will still be plenty of running banter, because, let's face it, that's just who I am.  And hopefully we can jump in on a couple of races if the timing works out.  Otherwise we'll mostly be preparing our legs and lungs for their new home at a much higher elevation (Utah is "Life Elevated"), flanked by gorgeous peaks and canyons.  So fear not, I am still here :)

No Reservations: Beginnings

I ask myself constantly, 'is this a good idea?', 'should we stay? It would be so much easier,' 'what if I don't get into school?', 'what if we can't find jobs?', 'what if we can't find fresh kale anywhere?', and most of all, 'what are we going to do without Trader Joe's?!'  (That last one keeps me awake at night.  We are Trader Joe fiends.  Like f'real.  Goodbye delicious and cheap almond butter, goodbye crumbled goat cheese, goodbye multigrain pilaf in the microwavable bag, goodbye...*SIGH*)

But life goes on once I get through each question and realize this one thing: Everything always works out.  It's just a matter of how that "works out" with what you had envisioned.  So it's a good reminder to be flexible.  Be mindful, and be thankful.  Thankful that we are in the position to make this kind of change, to take the summer off, to move somewhere beautiful and amazing, to not feel stuck on the tracks.  Disgustingly thankful.

And I just have a really, really good feeling about all of it.

The night before the big move, over Memorial Day weekend, the entire apartment packed neatly in boxes and crammed into the living room...

...I walked into the bedroom to grab something and out of habit flipped the switch to turn the lights on, but nothing happened.  Oh, that's right, we even packed the lights already.  It suddenly hit me and I stood there frozen for a moment...  We sat on the couch eating ice cream out of our camping bowls, no TV on as it was already packed, and I suddenly started crying/laughing; that sort of crazy sounding combination.  I was happy, but holy crap I was also really sad..."I tried to turn on the lights, but they're already packed...and I already miss it here and we haven't even left!! ...and who cries while eating ice cream?!?"  I was overcome by this intense melancholy and in the same instant I wanted Geof to call my bluff so we could unpack everything and return to life as we knew it, but at the same time I wanted to just leave it all behind, hop in the truck and get the hell outta Dodge.   It was a strange and confusing set of feelings, but expected all the same.

It was really happening.  Finally.

Packing up the moving truck the next day with Geof and two of my brothers I didn't give myself a chance to let anything else sink in; there was just too much to do.  And suddenly things looked like this...

We ate dinner on our last night in the apartment by the light of an old set 
of Christmas lights.  Livin' the rock star life :)

We hit the road and continued on for nearly 28 hours.  Through the flat congestion of Illinois, rolling pastoral farmland of Iowa, the wind tunnel that is Nebraska and Wyoming, and finally made it to our new home state, coasting mightily from Evanston, Wyoming all the way into Salt Lake City, Utah.  

We made it.

The evening before we vacated Chicago for good, we headed to Logan Square to meet up with some of my family at Dunlay's on the Square.  We sat around a huge table in the middle of the pub, 10-12 of us in all, with about 15 different conversations going simultaneously, kids playing Go Fish at one end, an animated speech by my older brother at the other end, playing musical chairs around the table throughout the night as conversations evolved and changed...it was pure chaos, purely Troelstrup, purely my family as I've always known it.  And I loved it.  

It was a good reminder: that life isn't about the work-a-day, about where you live or what you do, how much you make, or what you own.  It's about doing what you love, making it happen rather than waiting for it to happen, and, above all, family.

I'm going to miss my family so much, but luckily we're not too far away :)  And our Salt Lake family awaits with open arms.

Let the adventure begin!

Paige, out.


Danni said...

Yay! I am surprised there's no Trader Joes in SLC. I bet there will be before too long -- I mean there's on in Spokane why not SLC. You are going to love your new life and never look back. Yay you! And I'm really super jealous you get to live near Meghan.

Alene Gone Bad said...

The panic before taking the big step sounds pretty normal to me. It's okay to cry while eating ice cream. And don't worry, I heard Trader Joes is coming to Colorado (Boulder) so I'm sure it won't be long before they go to Utah.

You will have so many discoveries in your new home that you might forget all about Trader Joes.

You guys are doing what so many people are afraid to do, and they are missing out on living their lives!

HappyTrails said...

Wowzers - you guys are amazing! I would definitely cry if/when we left our house, neighborhood, area, etc. It's familiar and comfortable and it's scary taking that gigantic leap into the great unknown. We admire you guys for doing it! Love, love, love Trader Joes - unfortunately we don't have them her in CO - yet. Supposedly coming soon, first to Boulder. We have something called Natural Grocers/Vitamin Cottage that I think is based from Colorado into WY. Not sure if there are any in UT.... Have fun on your wonderful, great adventure! We'll be watching and taking notes.... :-)

Magdalena said...

The night before I left my NH home and moved out to western Nebraska for an awesome new job in a place I'd never been before I alternated between laughter and tears...that fine line between sadness at leaving and excitement for the new road ahead. Enjoy the new adventures that await you in SLC!!

David Ray said...

I like it!

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