Thursday, July 4, 2013

Independence Day

I'm spending the evening with my friend Colby and his family... The usual Fourth of July thing: hamburgers and fireworks and a big cookie decorated with strawberries and blueberries to look like the American flag. I'm soaking up as much of it as I can, breathing in the smell of grills and sulfur, absorbing the excitement of Colby's children. In less than three months I am moving to China for a year. 

This move is both sudden and overdue. I've never been outside the United States... I don't even yet have a passport or the Z Visa that allows me to work in China; I just received the job offer yesterday. I am excited and freaking out... An at the same time very calm about the whole idea.

I am leaving behind a daughter, at least temporarily. She will spend her junior year with my parents and join me later. 
In the next three months I will sell most of my belongings, find homes for my three cats, and pack my life into two big suitcases. 

Sometimes I think if I could leave right now I would just go; other times I think I want to freeze this moment forever. I want to sit in the dark with the sounds of the fireworks around us, wiggly children on tired laps.