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Moving

Blog

My musings on art and life, both personal and as an observer

 

Moving

Elissa Barber

 My passport photo from 2006(ish) age 22-23

My passport photo from 2006(ish) age 22-23

 Jay and Fiore, August 2018

Jay and Fiore, August 2018

Moving for me is often symbolic - it represents a new trajectory, leaving certain things behind or in the past. I've always seemed to move when a major change takes place in my life, like I want to wipe the slate clean and start fresh.

 In the case of this blog post it is also literal. We are going to be moving our little family from the home we purchased three years ago on a trendy, up-and-coming main street on the edge of downtown to the tree lined suburbs. 30 year old newly married me, still cool me is screaming “don’t do it!” The now mid 30s, home body mom me seriously can’t wait.

The house we’re in has served us well. Purchased for its close proximity to my favourite park, cafes and restaurants and easy commute to Jays old work in Burlington. We have it decorated to feel cozy in the winter and yet breezy in the summer. The extension across the back brought it to 1700 sq / ft allowing me to have my own little studio and my husband Jay to have ample storage for all of his bicycles. I’ve loved living here, we’ve really made it our own. It’s kept my creativity flowing and made staying home with a young baby bearable. 

Things have changed so much and the 2015 needs that brought us here are not priorities now that we have a young daughter. I long for a quiet neighbourhood with a big back yard and a play room for her to use more than I require a bright, spacious studio or short walk to good coffee. Jay has changed jobs and his preferred commute by bike brings him home just in time to kiss FiFi good night. We’d like him to maintain his active lifestyle but be home in time for family dinner. Living in the moment is no longer an option when things like schools become a real not so distant future prospect. Suddenly we have been thrust into proper adulthood with all of the responsibilities that go with it.

When I say I feel old I’m not trying to be dramatic. I know 35 is young. There has been a very real paradigm shift for me that has come with having a child that has really shook me. Things feel more urgent, time feels accelerated. My life is not just for me anymore.

I’m used to being prolific when it comes to creating art (as the stacks of work and aforementioned 1700 sq/ft home decorated top to toe with my pieces prove) but what I’ve been able to accomplish over the past 3-4 months has blown even me away. I always wondered how my own mother did it. Ran a household of seven and found time to help everyone else she knew and eventually go back to work. Though I can’t begin to compare my own juggling and multitasking of all life’s obligations with her super-hero like abilities, I’m proud of what I’m able to accomplish in a day.

So here we go up the mountain. Literally. A new adventure. Our real estate agent met with Jay and I on Friday evening and one thing that stuck out to me was a statistic he gave us. Something like 90% of people only move within 3-5 km of where they previously lived (don’t quote me). He felt like we were embarking on a “big move” and  it surprised me because I’ve never been afraid of making the big moves to spice up my life. I spent my late teens - early 20s as a student shuffling like a vagabond between Hamilton-Oakville-Toronto. Then moved to Northern Ireland on a whim for five long years, travelled Europe and even saw Egypt before returning to Hamilton to complete my degree. Now I don’t think you could pay me to move out of the city. With age and experience I’ve learned to value what I have and I feel like everything I need is here. It’s such a beautiful city and anyone who thinks otherwise hasn’t left it.

These blog posts are probably in part the work of my rambling subconscious but there is a more symbolic point to it after all. Maybe it’s that I’m looking forward to this next stage of our lives and where our family will go next. I’m feeling more optimistic as the time goes on that everything that has led up to the current state of being that Jay, Fiore and I are in needed to happen. As hard as some of it may have been to stomach, despite the seemingly missed opportunities or wasted time. Also in spite of feeling older and much more sore. Leaving our carefree days of youth behind. Something amazing is coming, I can feel it. 
 

EB x

 Home <3

Home <3

 Jay and I on our honeymoon at the Madonna Inn, during our road trip across California (2015)

Jay and I on our honeymoon at the Madonna Inn, during our road trip across California (2015)