The finality of our decision hit me hard. We’d just sold our gorgeous home with its breathtaking views and were leaving my supportive friends and community. We had signed on a new home in a place where I knew no one. The house itself, although nicely decorated, was much smaller than our previous one.
At this point, when we couldn’t turn back and change our minds, my husband, who was the impetus behind the move, changed his tune. Almost daily for the next few weeks, he’d comment, “I can’t believe what we just did. I wish I could wake up in the morning and it would all be a dream. If I had known how hard this would be, I probably would have never pushed to move.”
I was stuck in a very difficult position. I needed support myself at the same time that my husband was reaching out to me for support. Thankfully, I didn’t stoop to saying, “I told you so,” even though I felt that way. I had to work on myself to reach a very deep place of emunah and realize that this wasn’t his doing. He was the shaliach through whom this change had to happen.
I recalled the words of a close friend who had moved a few years back. She’d told me that just as Bnei Yisrael had to travel through many stations in the midbar until they reached Eretz Yisrael, all people have many situations and places they need to go through on their journey through life. Sometimes when one moves, it’s because this is where Hashem is leading them in order to fulfill their purpose in life. I davened to be zocheh to see what Hashem wanted from us.
I understood this on a logical level, yet I didn’t feel it in my heart. I was dejected to the point that I couldn’t even deal with the planning.
The situation became even more difficult to handle when my husband decided to put the new home we’d just signed on up for sale. It was very confusing for me. How could I plan the move and accomplish what needed to be done, keeping a positive attitude for everyone involved, if my husband was so conflicted?
Within all the turmoil, I began to acknowledge a new feeling. I’m pretty calm and accepting by nature, but suddenly I was experiencing enormous anger. I went to visit someone professional to sort out my feelings. I stormed in to her office and exclaimed, “Today, I’m not the calm, accepting woman you know. I’m very angry, frustrated, and overwhelmed. I don’t want to move. I like where I’m living. I decided to do it for my husband, and now he’s so unsure. And the kids are so confused when they hear him talking that way.”
The therapist encouraged me to talk it over with my husband. I asked him for five minutes to express my anger. In this controlled setting, he was able to accept it. I also requested that he complain only when the kids weren’t around, as they were having a hard time understanding his conflicting statements.
The moment when I gave voice to the whirlwind of emotion within me and gave myself permission to feel, I began to feel better. I experienced the power of acknowledging my emotions and accepting them.
Within the same week, there was one difficult day in which I was feeling very down. My sister called, and I couldn’t control myself from voicing a lot of negativity. She’s an incredible listener and patiently gave me a lot of time without interrupting.
At the end of my account, she said, “Estie, I’m sorry this is so hard for you. You’ve been so amazing throughout it all. I wanted to tell you that the real reason I called you today is because a few of us siblings sensed that this is really hard for you and decided we wanted to do something for you. We’ve gotten together to get you a house-warming gift so you’ll remember how much we love and support you. Should we buy the gift for you or would you like to pick it out yourself?”
That phone call couldn’t have come at a better time. It was a very clear reminder that things would be okay and Hashem knows exactly what He’s doing.
To be continued ...
(Originally featured in Family First, Issue 681)
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