Navigating Hope

It has been three weeks since we moved into our new apartment. It took almost two full weeks to move in our things from storage and get everything unpacked. We uncovered untold treasures: items we had been missing since we packed them away, as well as many things that we had forgotten we had.

We have an amazing amount of space here, comparatively speaking. In the last year, we have lived on the upper floor of a friend’s house, in the basement of my mom’s house, in a hotel room and in another friend’s house.

In all of these places, we have had to keep our belongings confined to a very small space, and in none of these did we have our own kitchen or cooking area. Before that, we lived in a 1-bedroom apartment, approximately 400 square feet of space.

Now, we have an expansive 850 square feet… it feels like a palace, and I mean no exaggeration in saying that. David and I have our own master bedroom with a walk-in closet. The girls have their own room with double closets. We have a galley-style kitchen with so much counter space. The living room has room for our books and there are shelves for my teapots… it’s wonderful!

For folks who have been living by the seats of our pants, and with 90% of our belongings in a storage unit for a year, it’s amazing, fantastic, exciting… and bittersweet. We have room now for the beautiful bassinet that my parents bought us for our baby shower. We have room for the organizer shelves that I bought for the huge stash of cloth diapers that my older girls shared.

We try not to think about those things, for the most part. They are there, and they bring sadness, but they bring hope as well. We may one day be able to use that bassinet, car seat, baby tub and boxes of baby clothes. When that day comes, we will have room to properly welcome that new little one, a home of our own to bring him or her to… things we did not have when we were pregnant with Clara.

And in the meantime, we have dedicated a place in our home for things that remind us of her. Her urn, her ultrasound pictures, her lock of hair and the sock monkey that her big sister Addah picked out for her… all have their special place in our new home.

We have decorated our home with lots of bright colors and light streaming in the windows… happy colors to keep our spirits lifted. It is our sanctuary, our special place that we have worked so hard to have, for so long. We surround ourselves with rainbows… and spend our days re-learning how to navigate this new world of independence, grief and loss, and tentative happiness and hope.

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