I first moved into my neighbourhood over 7 years ago. As you can imagine, everything in it is comfortable and familiar. I know that the brick building across the street always has bird feeders and that there are beautiful sweet peas in the garden behind the church rectory. I know the shortcut through the parking lot and beside the big brick apartment complex.
I know where the potholes are, and can give you a brief history of every landmark within a few-block radius. I know every aisle of the grocery store and that it doesn’t carry almond M&Ms. I know where my post office is, and when it’s open. I know that the hippies next door weed whack their lawn every summer because it doesn’t actually contain any grass. I know the menus of the closest restaurants.
When I got married a few years ago, we chose to stay in my place (a rather squashy-for-two condo) and save up some money. And finally, after months of work and real estate shenanigans, my husband and I will be moving to a new neighbourhood. By the end of this month, I will no longer be a resident of our much-loved street.
I know our new ‘hood, in a sort of vague, roundabout way – my grandparents lived there when I was a child, and I went to university nearby. It’s lovely. I’m just having a bit of a hard time with the sheer amount of pesky, adult things that I will have to change, which seems absurd now that I’m writing it down. Who cares if my pharmacist, my dentist, my optometrist are all nearby? I can change them. People do it all the time. Right? (The other day, I actually thought to myself, “Oh NO. I have to break in a new coffee shop!!” Yes, I realize that is ridiculous.)
I’m working on setting aside the anxiety – because really, it’s an adventure, and one I’m excited to start. It’s a privilege to be able to move somewhere new and explore. I like the huge trees and the cute back alleys. I’m happy to have new restaurants to try and trails to walk. We will have a yard. A garage! A sidewalk to shovel. A guest bedroom!
I’m ready, but part of my heart will always live in my old neighbourhood.