The last time we moved, three years ago, I had the Herculean task of consolidating beautiful things from many years of living in a large home into a proper amount that would fit into an apartment... across the country. This time, the move will not be nearly as far-flung, and the space will be relatively the same, just reconfigured. So, it will be a "breeze." I thought.
A wife's hometown in California and a husband's hometown in Virginia, a turbulent marriage, intermittent thoughts of divorce in an increasingly mobile society, and the burden of proving to the court that the relationship between child and the non-custodial parent will only be "minimally impacted" are the things that nasty custody battles are made of.
Each time we left a house, I bid tearful farewells and promises to return to my friends: the towering hemlock, whose fragrant needles cushioned me in my reading nest; the screen door whose easy slap announced our comings and goings; the curve of the dormer ceiling in what had been my bedroom. I never returned, never, to any of them.