Friday, August 10, 2007

Longing for home

I do this to myself every time. Every. Time. The girls and I visit Chicago, my childhood and early adulthood home, the place where all of our family members live, the place where D and I met and fell in love, and I just want to move back. Once we return to our current home, I spend all of my time researching the possibility of returning home. Home. I research schools. I sign up with a million different online realtors to search for homes. I plot said homes on the online map of the attendance area of the school that I’m confident would be a better school for my kids than the one they’re in now. I search for jobs for my husband. I research property taxes, and condo assessments. I refresh my memory about the crime rates, the environmental concerns that Chicago faces, the weather, the traffic. I figure out how we could make it work in a two bedroom condo (we live in a 5 bedroom house now)---as long as it has a family room and a garage space. We could sell one of the cars and D could bike to work which he would love or he could take public transit. I convince myself that it’s doable. I do.

I continue this until I’m blue in the face. Until I can’t stand it anymore. I try to remember how wonderful it is where we are now. And it is wonderful. We love it here. We do. We have a beautiful house in a beautiful neighborhood, nestled into the unbelievable beauty of our surrounding area. Our kids are in a terrific school. My husband has a terrific job. We have friends. Friends who are here for us. Who love us and support us.

I try to remember how expensive it is to move. We ought to know, we’ve done it a million times. I try to remember how much of a pain in the neck it is to move. I remind myself that the current housing market sucks and we’d have a tough time selling this house we’ve only lived in for two years and have very little equity in. I remind myself how terrific my husband’s job is here and how challenging it is for a family doc in a large city. I remind myself of the big city traffic, the big city crime. The horrible Chicago weather. The mosquitoes! I remind myself how much I enjoy it when our families come to visit and how we have bulk quality time with them every time they come. And how if we lived back home we’d only get to share them with everyone else for a few short hours here and there. I remind myself how we miss the hell out of them now, but if we lived back home maybe we’d even get sick of them now and then.

I remind myself of all of these things and I still can’t help it. I still keep plugging away on the computer for hours a day, days and days at a time. I just can’t help it.

In about six months I’ll get over it and finally start to love where I live again. Or at least like it. Or at least accept that staying put is the right course of action for us. Just in time to make another visit home and the whole cycle starts all over again. Sigh.

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