as soon as we finalized the application paperwork for the loft downtown and handed it over to the office, there was a painful rush of doubt.
it didn’t feel right. it felt like we were making the wrong choice for our boy.
for the week it took to hear whether or not we were approved, second (and third and fourth and fifth) thoughts plagued my worried mind. each night i tried to rest and drift off to sleep, i couldn’t. i stayed up late, sick with guilt, staring at liam. i felt i was failing him as his mother by choosing what we wanted over what he needed.
after a year of living the quiet, calm, often boring suburban life in dallas, aaron and i were so eager to get back to the city — into the hustle and bustle and excitement of it all.
but by uprooting liam from everything he loves — the flowers, trees, grass, trails, animals — and venturing deeper into the concrete jungle, weren’t we doing the wrong thing? weren’t we being selfish?
his love of nature and everything in it started from birth. when he was tiny and precious and brand new, whenever he would fuss, we would step outside and sit quietly on the porch. the freeing feeling of the wind blowing through his hair and the cheerful chirping of the birds and the gentle rustle of the leaves on the trees comforted him as much, if not more, than my milk or papa’s arms ever could. almost three years later, the outdoors still make him just as content, just as joyful.
every time the skies begin to storm, and the earth begins to rumble, and lightning strikes, his bright, ever-curious eyes remain glued to the window until the show is over. he loves falling asleep to the sound of wild owls hooting and rain falling and thunder crashing and fires crackling. his favourite books (that he has us read to him again and again and again and again) all feature animals or beautiful nature scenes.
my heart ached at the thought of taking my little boy, my greatest joy, away from all that he holds dear. but i held my tongue and said nothing to aaron; he was much too thrilled about the possibility of being a city-dweller once more, it wasn’t fair to crush his dreams and make him share in the guilt i was feeling.
my worried mind doesn’t feel so worried anymore. once we were approved and began preparing for the move, everything started falling into place. there was a new sense of optimism, and there were so many new things to look forward to.
we can still go to parks and feed the birds and make nests and smell the flowers and collect rocks. it’s just not quite as easy as stepping outside our front door anymore.
but now there’s a whole new world to introduce our liam to, a whole new adventure to embark upon. the trees in this world are made of steel and concrete; the songs of the birds have been replaced by cars whizzing by; and there may not be as many leaves, but you can still feel the wind blowing through your hair.
it’s not right, and it’s not wrong. it’s just different.