The inside scoop, and 2,000 miles in between
Just under six weeks ago, we put everything we owned in the back of a truck, stuffed our cars full of lamps and golf clubs and cat toys, squeezed our lifelong friends goodbye, and went to bed knowing that we would be spending our last night sleeping as Indiana residents.
Leaving what was our home for the last 26 years was beautifully bittersweet. We are loved and known so fiercely in Indiana by so many people we don’t deserve to know. No matter how much I love the mountains, it is the cornfields that I will always call home.
And here we are: six weeks into our next great adventure, where dreams are awakened in the clouds and hearts are set free in mile high air. A journey that requires a whole lot of trust and a great deal of sacrifice. Transition is never easy, but without it, we can become stuck and uninspired. I have been determined to step into all the fullness that this next chapter has offered with palms up and knees bent. After all, God’s primary goal for us in the midst of change is that we would change.
And that we have. Six weeks ago we moved 2,000 miles away from our home, and made a new home in a new city. Life has been a hustle and bustle of allthethings – from starting a new job three days after we stepped foot into our new apartment, to getting a new cat, to searching high and low for a new church, to reconnecting with old friends, to spending every spare second breathing in the cool air at the tip top of a mountain, we have been trying to make the most of every moment.
Since I feel that my public sharing has been made known in a hodge podge of sentences that I’m sure doesn’t make any sense, I wanted to give you a bit of an update. I’m don’t always know how I feel about “life updates” on my blog, because this blog isn’t meant to bring attention to me. But, I also recognize that knowing one’s story gives context and credibility to words and thoughts, so here goes 😉
Wait, why did you move again?
Those of you who have been following my writing over the past year know our story has been rocky and supernatural. Last summer, Cal decided to become a pilot.
Yeah, whoa right?
For the sake of not beating a dead horse, I will keep that portion of the story to a minimum, and just say he was like a dead man walking when he was working in accounting. Our first year of marriage was TOUGH because all of the energy was being sucked out by a career that was killing us. And so, last summer, we began to explore the idea of a job change. Like, a complete job change. It was fun and exciting until it wasn’t.
We realized the incredible amount of sacrifice that it would take to make such a big switch. A pilot lifestyle is a whole new world. Yes, we get free plane tickets (and all the people said AMEN), but we also get a schedule where Cal is gone 12 days straight out of the month. Not only was he deciding to go back to school, but we were talking about a radical lifestyle switch. So we prayed and fasted and processed with trusted community and pastors and prayed some more and researched and talked and thought and searched. He decided to start with his private pilot’s license, which he did locally in Indianapolis. But ultimately, we knew a big move was in our future. The school we decided on was located in 40 major cities… but not Indianapolis.
So, with a bittersweet mixture of sorrow and gladness, we decided that the summer of 2017 we would pack it all up and head out west.
Our God is hilarious. I’m not trying to be a jokester. He literally has the best sense of irony. For the past ten years, I was dead set on moving to Colorado. Like, when Cal and I were dating, I told him it was deal breaker (LOL). But, when we got married and nurtured DEEP community, I started to fall head over heels in love with Indianapolis. The city was my home- every nook and cranny. We had an incredible church and lifelong friends. Our families lived close. Cost of living is CHEAP (ha).There is culture and beauty where you don’t expect it. I loved the four seasons and the local restaurants and the fun coffee shops. I couldn’t imagine leaving anymore. Let this be a lesson to all that you can never plan anything ever. 😉
That being said, finding out last summer that a move was in our future was devastating in the beginning. I cried. A lot. I processed with Cal and friends. A lot. I prayed. A lot. But, we found out that this school was in Denver. DENVER. The place I wanted to move for years and years.
We narrowed our move down to the west, because the weather was better (i.e. quicker training). Cal’s flight school is INTENSE and time consuming (meaning he can’t work for the first year), so it boiled down to where I found the best job. We were looking and praying over Dallas, Denver, and Phoenix. I had my fingers crossed for Denver, and was holding my breath for one job in particular…
Where do you work?
A while ago, I started processing through a career switch myself. Although I knew social work was a calling, it started to become clear that it may not be a career (more on that later). I love working with people, hearing their story, and offering myself as a ladder to help them out of the ditch. But I was starting to get worn out with the lack of innovation and creativity. I wasn’t being challenged, and worse, I was feeling completely rundown. So, I decided to look into careers that would allow me to use the right side of my brain a little more.
Enter: Public Relations. I would still have the opportunity to help others find their voice, but in a way that I was able to use a deeper level of creativity. I was super picky about the firm I wanted, which is ironic because I am new to the field. I wanted to have a place with like-minded individuals in a space that was intimate enough for me to have a voice in the process. I wanted a place that would want a PERSON, not just a POSITION filled. And I wanted to feel simultaneously challenged and safe.
Scene two: D/CO Consulting.
Through a series of events that can only be described as God-ordained, I got connected with D/CO. A non-traditional, grassroots, Public Relations firm that works with a wide variety of clients: it's my actual dream job. From politics to non-profits, we do it all. I get to write all day every day, build relationships, manage social media, help brand websites, and learn innovative ways to keep things fresh. I love it and I am exhausted. In an incredibly life giving way.
What is Cal doing?
Cal starts flight school on August 14! We ran into some barriers when he first applied for a loan (namely, we found out his information was stolen and we had a $5,500 charge on his credit card that was NOT ours…). BUT, praise the Lord (literally, we are), the charge was cleared, the loan was given, and we are on our way to officially becoming a pilot family. He’s been driving for ubereats in the meantime (Seriously. Talk to me sometime about how great this is for a little extra cash), riding his bike down all the mountain roads, and being a rockstar at managing the loose ends that come with moving across the country.
What’s your favorite thing about Colorado?
THE MOUNTAINS. We can see the Rockies from our porch. Maybe I’m over-exaggerating, but I swear the air feels fresher here. We are a 30 minute drive from a mountain hike. It’s like a vacation all the time. I’m pinching myself that we get to live in a place so breathtaking. The weather is also pretty incredible. 300 sunny days is NO JOKE. It’s rained maybeeee four times since we moved.
We’ve had a blast exploring all the different hikes. If we hiked every day for the rest of our lives, we still wouldn’t cover all the ground. I am giddy thinking about it.
I’m planning on throwing together an insider’s guide into the hiking around here if you are ever in town for a visit. But, for now I’ll give you a brief rundown of our current favorites:
-Mount Quandary: A 14,000+ foot mountain that is a steep climb with unreal views. We even met a few mountain goat friends along the way.
-Golden: Golden is a town, not a trail (😉), but we LOVE going there for easy hikes. Still beautiful, but much easier than a whole mountain. Our favorites in Golden so far include: White Ranch Park, Belcher Hill Trail, and Sawmill to Maverick to Longhorn loop.
-Chataqua Park: Located in Boulder, and a relatively easy place with lots of hikes that are not super crowded. In the spirit of full disclosure, Boulder was not our favorite place to go for hikes. But this hike wasn’t too crowded, and we loved the feeling of being surrounded by mountains.
What do you miss about Indiana?
THE PEOPLE. Indiana holds the kindest, bravest, and most steadfast people we know, and our hearts ached to leave. We’ve done well maintaining the long distance friendships (again, more on this later), but it’s not without sacrifice. Indiana will always be our home filled with our people.
THE AESTHETICS. The vibe in the Midwest is very clean and minimalistic, which is a bit different than the Western world. Colorado strikes me as much more eclectic. As funny as that is to miss, I can’t deny it’s true. I miss our white washed walls and light filled apartment in Indiana, and I especially miss the cute little local restaurants and coffee shops.
THE COST OF LIVING. We pay double the rent on our apartment here, so enough said.
THE RAIN. I know, I know- this sounds strange, especially since I noted how much I love the weather here in Colorado. That’s true, but the heart is fickle, and I miss a good Midwest thunderstorm.
Have you found a church?
Not yet, but we are actively looking. We have found one that we could see ourselves attending, and still have a few more on the list of places to try. It’s the fine line between not being too picky and standing strong in certain values.
I could write a book on that, so I’ll stop there.
We love our new life here, but don’t be fooled: no one’s life is perfect or without sacrifice. We certainly have a life brimming of adventure, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t difficulty. It often feels like we are straddling now between two homes- Colorado and Indiana. Friends who have moved before: what tips do you have in balancing your time with multiple home states well?
Learning the balance of living and loving well,