Talking to Myself


Nine months ago, my husband and I sold our beloved little Craftsman in our favorite Seattle neighborhood and moved to the suburbs. We needed to move—six people, four of them growing rapidly, in a two-bedroom house was becoming untenable. No, it was already untenable. I was at the end of my rope, and my sanity.

So we moved.

And I am still grieving. I miss my little house so much. I miss my old neighborhood. It doesn’t help that now it takes 45 minutes to visit my friends or that every third day, something in our new-to-us house breaks: the furnace, the electrical outlets in the kitchen, the dishwasher. Even the baseboards are falling off the walls.

I have raged and railed and grieved. I have given thanks and made (figurative) lemonade and tried to look on the bright side. I have beaten myself up with shameful words. I have hidden. I have half-hoped the house would burn to the ground. I have tried to let go of my anger and grief. I have pleaded with God.

But I am stuck in this house. I cannot go back. I cannot unmake the decision I made last summer.

After nine months I am still—still—grieving. 


I’m over at Grace Table today, friends, having a little conversation with myself about grief and gratitude and being hospitable with those parts of me I’d rather didn’t exist…I’d love to chat with you, too, if you’ll come on over and join me.


  • AJ

    Of course! Places must be grieved, as must anything that is loved. If it’s good enough to love, it’s good enough to grieve. Not only that, being a city dweller is an identity and that changes, too.

    I’ve had some hard moves in my life, and one pulled me out of a place I loved so much that I never fully got over it.

    My prayer for you is that you will find home and create home and feel the peace of knowing that you are where you belong . I almost wonder if this new home is temporary. Your heart is clearly telling you something about its deepest desires.

    I feel the soul of a place, deeply. I suspect that you do, too.

  • Kimberlee Conway Ireton

    Yes, I feel the soul of a place. I am deeply formed by the Benedictines–and by place-lovers like Wendell Berry and Eugene Peterson–for whom stability of place is an important part of spiritual growth. I feel like I betrayed that part of myself in my move, and I’m having to grieve that betrayal and forgive myself for it, which is hard. Part of being able to forgive myself is giving myself permission to grieve and weep.

    Despite the increased number of tears this past month, my overall anxiety level is down (!). I think simply not being afraid of my own emotion is a huge breakthrough. I feel the sadness and anger more deeply in some ways, but I’m also detached from them, somehow, so they don’t frighten me or make me anxious. This whole standing outside oneself and treating oneself as a beloved friend is super helpful, I must say!