Last night, we bought the kids McDonald's chicken sandwiches, and then Bill and I went out to the local Irish pub for sandwiches. The truck had just left with 99% of our household goods. It was a good feeling I had - one of relief and accomplishment. Of course, I was exhausted, too.
I told Bill how I felt this transition is so much different than most of the others. Usually they pack the truck, we spend a day cleaning, and then we're off to new adventures. This time, we're telling others (and ourselves), "We're still here for a month!"
There's a farewell dinner this evening for Bill, but his change of command isn't until next week (next week!!!), so it's not really goodbye.
And then the change of command, but we will still, hopefully, be waiting for the baby, and we'll just have to bring that baby into the office to show people who have been waiting for months to see him or her, right? So, that's not really goodbye.
Then Bill will go set up our new home, but I'll still be here, and he's coming back for me, so no need to say goodbye then, either.
Eventually, perhaps, we'll just stop popping up in places as we stealthily head down I-95 one day.
I do hate goodbyes. Gradual or not, at some point, they become final.
So, last night, I had a calm sense of relief that we had gotten all of our things loaded and headed for Tampa. I had no other cares in the world.
This morning, I have plans to get my kiddos cleaning baseboards and door frames and windows while I shampoo rugs. We'll get all the heavy work done now, and then just focus on maintaining it after that. Even working alone, I could probably do the whole house in this coming week: move the fridge, wipe out the cabinets, dust the ceiling fans. I'm not concerned about the cleaning. It will keep us all busy and productive.
The change of command will come with no effort on my part. Every few days, Bill tells me about some other person with influence who seems to have issues with the date, just because the incoming commander isn't in country. Nobody likes plans that have so little wiggle room.
"Why are we rushing things?" asked the latest VIP. I had a fit of apoplexy when Bill relayed that to me. We were supposed to be in Tampa back in February. I don't see where anybody has ever made any effort to rush things.
"Don't worry," my husband comforted me.
"I'm not worried," I told him. "You should be worried about your crazy, hormonal wife plopping her big fat belly on somebody's desk and giving them what for."
But really, I'm not worried. What happens, happens. These conversations were pesky diversions from the stress of getting ready to move. Now that the pack out had been accomplished, I shouldn't have another care in the world other than what to put in my bag for the birth center.
But no, no no no no....there must be something to stress out about. My very first thought this morning was that I absolutely, positively had to get all the baby clothes washed and ready right now.
The problem is, I don't have a washing machine. I DON'T HAVE A WASHING MACHINE!!!! Was I crazy for letting those movers take my machine? What was I thinking? Why didn't I do all this laundry before the packers came?
I had to talk myself off the ledge. I do have a plan. Between Craigslist and the word on the street, I am confident I will get a washer in the next 48 hours. Something old and used and cheap. I told my lawn guy and his cousin I would need it on June 15th, so for all I know, one could just show up here this afternoon. Otherwise, my husband will go out hunting tomorrow.
It'll be fine. It'll all work out. No need to panic. Not yet, at least.