Let me start by saying I do NOT have an independent personality. At all. I've never lived alone, never seen a movie by myself or eaten by myself in a restaurant and my friends will tell you that I always had someone with me to even go to the bathroom throughout high school and college. Yes, I was that girl. I thrive when I'm around others and the majority of the happiest moments in my life have included family and friends in some way or another. Maybe it's because I'm an extrovert. Maybe it's because I often find boredom in solitude. But whatever it is, the move to Cleveland, Ohio was a big one for me.
Sure I had been with Derek for over 7 years, but do you know how many people we knew up here? Zero. A big fat zilch. In fact, I really didn't know anyone in the entire state of Ohio. Our friends and family were mostly 13+ hours away and worse, I would be working from home. It's was nice gig, but there wouldn't be co-workers to meet or friends to be made through a new employer. It would be me, the dogs and Derek for the first year up here. Needless to say, it was rough. We had no one. Thankfully I was pregnant for a large part of it and our wonderful marriage remained flawless, but I can't deny the toll it took on my heart.
My mother-in-law always used to tell me that she credits her strong relationship with my father-in-law to living so far from family and having to raise children on their own. It wasn't until I had Drew up here that I understood. As much as I longed to be near friends and family, envious of pictures and events across social media sites, it only made our marriage that much stronger. Sure Derek had some work friends, but ultimately it was just the two of us. We HAD only each other to rely on and we had to create our own weekend entertainment. And it's only now that I can look back and be thankful.
It was because of those times together that we still look at each other and say that we have an amazing marriage. We respect each other more than ever and aren't just great friends. We are each other's best friends. Period. When Derek decided to jump on a different career path knowing we could end up anywhere in the U.S., I was extremely hesitant. I wish I could go back now and tell myself 3 years ago that it will be ok. You'll eventually make friends and your marriage will only strengthen more than it already was. Moving away will be ok.
Now in our 4th year here, we've done more in 2013 with various friends than we probably did in the first 2 years combined. We now have daycare friends, Jayhawk friends, neighbor friends, blog friends, library group friends and more. We have enjoyed quite a few night outs with babysitters and I have finally found 'my place' here in good 'ole Ohio. Despite my fears of being so far from family, I have a wonderful life and am in love with our little family unit. Sure, it's nice being with friends and having a social life, but in the end it comes down to just the two of us. Period.
Sarah's blog: Our Journey
Sarah, wife to Derek and mama to Drew, shares her experiences in her various roles and includes the occasional yummy recipe and running post! She's also mom to her two beautiful furry babies, Lacy & Bailey. Sarah and Derek are getting ready to celebrate their EIGHTH wedding anniversary next month, how amazing and fortunate are they? Thanks for sharing part of your story with us, Sarah - congratulations to the two of you & here's to many more happy years!