It’s been over 30 days now since we landed in Tennessee. I’ve barely been on Facebook but to ask for financial and emotional support for my recovering puppy. I haven’t baked challah. I haven’t swam. I haven’t blogged.
I have grieved. Have felt conflicted with my decision to move. I have nervously packed up my schoolbooks (yes, in a backpack…). I’ve studied for long hours. Have felt excited about my research assistantship. I’ve known this was a good choice.
I’ve felt relief in Saturday morning amongst the stalls at Market Square; reminiscent of the JP-vibe. Have enjoyed the most yummy cupcakes. Cried. Curled up in my bed and worried about moving again in December to a permanent place. Carried my pup up and down flights of stairs to the bathroom. Cried some more.
I’ve hugged my nieces for the first time since Thanksgiving 2014. Watched our family dog die. Surprised my mum for her birthday. Felt joyed.
I’ve excitedly accepted a first BBQ invite. Wondered what it means to be queer in a town that has only lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender social groups. Joined a “Lesbian Sunday social” meet-up. Been so thankful for my doctoral cohort support system. Missed my Boston family. Wished I was home.
I have plans.
This weekend, I will go watch free, live Bluegrass in Market Square with my spouse. We will sit on lawn chairs atop the concrete and swat away mosquitos while fiddle and banjo notes wash over us. I will pretend not to sweat (Southern women glow, after all). I will bake brownies for aforementioned barbecue, and buy fresh raspberries or other fruit from the farmers market. I will take my beautiful dog to Concord Park – her first non-veterinarian related outing since we moved here. We will play ball because she can finally move her back legs without falling. [And because we bought her a squeaky bouncy ball after our last veterinarian visit; during which she was diagnosed with another infected limb.] We will enjoy our time together as a family.
I will do homework while my spouse goes to his first leatherworking class. And then, he will be my guinea pig; letting me use him as subject practice for upcoming qualitative interviews. I will clean the kitchen and bathroom. We will go to the pool. We may even sunbathe. I will plan for the upcoming week: meals, workouts, car-sharing, doggie care, chores, and sleep.
I will still think about my friends in Boston and wonder what they are doing. If they miss me too. I may still feel out of place. But, when I light Shabbat candles, I will pray for the grace to appreciate what I have here.