As I was scurrying around getting things ready to go for my trip to Denver, thoughts and images from my old life kept popping up—and so did emotions. Well, I didn’t have time for that, not to mention that breaking down in the post office or the bank is generally a bad plan all the way around. When I got home, I still had a lot to do so I kept busy, kept myself distracted. The random thoughts and feelings still crept in, but I kept working because I had to get things done. Finally, about 7:30 last night, I sat down and let it flow. Literally and figuratively.
Now, I could have just decided to relax and watch television—and I had the remote control in my hand several times to do exactly that. It would have distracted me and I would have felt better—at least for a short time—but it wasn’t going to actually fix anything. And whatever this was, I wanted it fixed.
On some level, I knew I hadn’t fully grieved the loss of leaving Colorado, and particularly my home in the mountains. It was home in a way no other place ever has been for me. I have a deep love for it even though I complained about it constantly and resented being “trapped” in “Siberia.”
So much is tied up in that time and place. My children grew up there—and I started growing up there too. I started reclaiming parts of myself that I had turned my back on. I did incredible amounts of physical work on that property, and I expanded my beliefs about my own capabilities and skills. It made me strong in more ways than just physical strength. I think it was that way for all of us. The place changed us. And then, after 13 years of building and growing and living, it was over. Like a switch being flipped, it was just over.
In many ways, life as I knew it ended that night I drove out my gate and down that dirt road with the moving truck. It was what I wanted. I had been determined to sell the place from the moment we bought it, but when it actually happened, I was in shock. Of course, the unraveling of our lives had begun long before that night, but I couldn’t face the truth of all that. I couldn’t face much of anything at that point. I just put all those thoughts and feelings in a box and focused on doing what I had to do, focused on managing the real-world details of the fallout. I blocked out everything and everyone else, to the point that I left without saying goodbye to anyone, even my best friends.
The ending of it all was a huge shock and I’m not sure any of us—my children or their parents—have recovered from it. Obviously, I haven’t. Today, however, I hope I am much closer. The two-plus hours of uncontrolled sobbing last night better have helped something. I can’t remember the last time something hit me that way. And the funny thing is I didn’t think about anything but the good stuff. There were some important insights, but mostly, I think it was just a deep grieving that was long overdue.
The ending to this story isn’t written yet. I do feel a sense of closure and release—of many things—and feel it will continue to evolve. I’ll let you know how I feel when I go up there and walk around the property and hike the area again.
In the meantime, here are a few photos of the property and area.
I believe it is completely possible that, although you resented it at the time, the deep love and longing that you have for this place may be evidence that you simply weren’t as ready then to live there.
Thank you for sharing this.
Oh, there are so many lessons from the experience. I didn’t want to like it for many reasons, primarily that I felt forced into and I felt abandoned, that what I wanted didn’t matter–and it didn’t. So, I held it against the place. And yet I loved it deeply. I resented being “forced” to live there and then I resented being forced to leave.
I put my heart and soul in that place and it was really the only time in my life I had a real sense of belonging. I truly felt like I had lost everything, yet by keeping my grief (anger, resentment, sadness) I still had something. So much wrapped up in all of that!
I’m also discovering how so much of that situation has kept me tied to my condo. I won’t let go of it because, well, just look what happened last time. Still much to be learned, but I am feeling better by the moment.
Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. I appreciate you!
I love you Mom! You have been an inspiration to me and my husband, we love you! Have a good trip!
Thank you, dear daughter! I am so very proud of you!!!!!
Hope to see you very soon! I love YOU!!!!
I am loving being here! Have connected with old and new friends and just having a great time. I’ve also done a lot of yard work for my daughter–and much more to come–which I am also enjoying. I bought a condo for a reason, but I do miss the outside work. We’ll see if this gets me over needing it anymore for a while or if I’m ready to jump back in once my condo sells. We shall see!