Friday, September 23, 2011

so long, farewell, auf weidersehen, goodbye

Here we are, back home after 4 days in the city. Well, 3½ since we didn't get into Houston til about 4 PM.

Monday night we had dinner with our son, Aaron, and daughter-in-law, Leesa, before their going away gathering on the back deck of a neighborhood bar.

My son and his wife have decided to move to Oregon. They are young yet, in their 30s, and they are going for a change. They are attracted by the community, however job unfriendly it is, and the weather, after this exceptionally hot and dry year, looks good to them. They have visited Portland before and really liked it. The whole urban thing, being able to walk to what you need, not needing a car because there other good alternatives; fresh food markets, a green mindset, recycling, politically like-minded to themselves. And she lived in Olympia for a time previously.

Actually Olympia was their first destination but for whatever reasons they changed their minds and decided on Portland. I like Portland. I know some other glass artists who live there and I 'know' other bloggers in the area as well and my niece and her husband live there. My brother and his wife live in the Seattle area. So that is Aaron's and Leesa's destination. They will stay with his cousin until they settle in.

They have no real plans besides getting out of Houston. There are no jobs waiting for them, no house or apartment. They have rid themselves of most of their possessions, keeping only what will fit in a 12' box truck and have thrown their fates to the wind.

Leesa is an artist and freelance illustrator and now that she is getting fairly steady work she wants to give Aaron the same chance he gave her. His G.I. Bill is going to run out and he wants to take advantage of the education funding, going to college or maybe taking a printmaking class or some other more creative endeavor besides managing a copy shop.

I've known about the move for two months but I haven't been able to write about it. When he called, he said he had some news. I was in a particularly good mood at the time so was expecting to hear something good. I was not expecting him to tell me he was moving 2,500 miles away.

After the stunned silence wore off, I cried.

I'll never see you again.

Yes you will, besides I hardly see you now, he says, since you moved.

I only moved 55 miles away. One hour away.

Well, I've gotten used to the idea now. I still don't like it, but I'm resigned to it.  Anyway, I understand and I hope they have fun on their big adventure. If we were young and childless, we might do something like it ourselves. Well, I guess we did do something like it. Old with children grown, we moved out here.

But still, big bear hugs from my boy are going to be few and far between now.


  1. How exciting for them! In perhaps direct proportion to how excruciating for you? I'm so sorry they're moving so far away, but it sounds like a thoughtful decision. I wonder what it would be like to life among like-minded individuals?

  2. Tough to see your kids get farther away, but what a nice area to go visit them.Hope they find what they are looking for.

  3. awww. i do hope it will be a great adventure for them. maybe a new life / home for them. :)

  4. Let's think positively...This will give you a place to go when you travel...

    My daughter's inlaws live in Oregon...they really like to visit there...

  5. Best wishes on your son and dil's adventure. I give them credit for making such a big decision, and following through, which is not always easy to do.

  6. This is exciting for them. Best wishes, farewell, but not good bye.

  7. Of all the places they could choose to move to, Portland is probably the best. I lived there for a little while but couldn't deal with the rain. Hopefully, it will not bother the kids. Plus, you now get to visit one of the more beautiful places in the world where some of the most beautiful people live. Very unlike Texas.

  8. that does sound tough and i remember how i felt when amy moved away (when she joined the navy) and when shaun got transferred to the seattle area. it is sad but what a great place to go visit.

  9. Oh, Ellen, of course you'll see them again.

    Yes, the job prospects there a not so good, but certainly no bleaker than anywhere else at the moment. And besides, in many respects, Portland is the Future. They've got a sane approach to city planning, have gotten sprawl under control, public transit, biking, an just in general a healthier sense of community than most other urban areas. I think, all in all, it allows for an osmosis of healthy thoughts and emotions to occur just by being saturated in a progressive atmosphere.

    I guarantee your kids will be the better for it. Maybe not right away, but eventually.

    It's a step in the right direction.

  10. Blog skipping and I was struck by the beauty of your glasswork. A tiny bee, a hibiscus blossom, so lovely, so well done.
    Family is as close as our hearts. Hang in there.

  11. :( Hope it works out well for them. Portland is such a lovely area to live and work in.

  12. Very brave and sad for you but just a hop away...really.

  13. I hold your hand- I commiserate..My son is living in Portland , too. I miss him so damned much...I must say, however, you could not ask for a better place to have your kids go live in! It's awesome! You would be wise to move there as well. Me too, and believe me, I have considered it. I love your daughter's work , skill& Talent! Portland is artsy in the extreme! They are going to be very happy with their decision even if they are broke! It's just a plane trip away! Meet you there?

  14. ha i thought of linda sue and her boy as i read this. i have an almost seventeen year old and an almost fifteen year old and i cannot bear to think of that moment. the one you describe so excruciatingly here. but it's what we're supposed to prepare them for right? whatever. i don't wanna think about it. steven

  15. Yeah - my oldest went off to college (in Manhattan!) and never really came back home, except for a few days now and again. Great place to visit - once every five years. I've been wishing for years for him to come back. Now you're making me want to hop on the plane.

  16. Ellen it is exciting for them, but I do understand how you feel. hopefully you will get to see them more than you thinking about you, sending prayers your way. hugs.

  17. It is one thing for our children to leave our homes for wife and jobs...but when they pick up and move hundreds of miles breaks our hearts.
    We long to hold them close. Keep them near forever!! I feel your pain, and I understand. I send you big hugs sweetie. I know this is exciting for them and tough for you.

  18. it is exciting for them isn't it!
    and I can feel how hard it is for you


  19. Oh man, they are so cute! I wish them well on their adventure.

    And you? Sending as many energetic Reya bear hugs in your direction as possible. It's not the same, I know, but it's all I can do.

  20. Touching tribute to your son and his wife, and your perspective on the move is heartfelt. I sympathize with you, but as one who made the leap once upon a time from my own childhood home, it is SO good for the soul. They will be deeper, closer together, and better grounded for the experience. EFH

  21. I'm sorry, dear Ellen, you will miss them. That's the nature of the thing.

    But it is also the nature of the thing to have to accept that children move on and away and lead their own lives in a place of their own choosing.

    It's a bugger, but there you are.

    You never know, they might do well enough to have a little annexe for their parents to come and visit. Often.

  22. I feel for you, I really do. My kids live within an hour of me, but I don't see them as often as I'd like. They're busy and happy, though. My husband and I are thinking of moving away - to a nearby island that will make the distance between us 4-5 hours. Visits may be less frequent but last longer. Instead of a dinner it will last a weekend.
    Same situation for you - and there's e-mail, the phone, skype,'ll be OK. Bravo to your son and daughter-in-law for making a conscious choice. I love their sense of adventure - they will be fine and so will you.

  23. Hey, we'll take good care of them. And now you definitely need to come visit.

  24. I'm sorry you're hurting. I'm sure you'll have opportunity to visit them from time to time and they'll be back for visits as well. I know how difficult it is to have your son live far from home. No matter the age, they're always our babies. Hugs to you.

  25. Oh, Ellen, I'm so enjoying catching up with you this morning. You write right from the heart. My son is only fourteen and I'm shedding tears just reading about your grown, married son moving so far away with his wife. I can imagine your pain.

    You will, of course, see him again.

    And I got completely sidetracked at Leesa's website. She is a talent! Portland will be a wonderful place for them--huge artists community and I can see why they'd want that adventure.

    Be well, Ellen. *Hugs*

  26. You may hear from him more now, since he will be so far away. He may realize what he has left behind.


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