{putting off}

Monday, May 11, 2015

I have been putting off posting this. When we first moved here I remember watching the neighbors pull out their camp chairs & coolers & sit in the circle as the sun settled, turning the sky yellow, then orange, then pink & finally purple. I watched them from our bedroom balcony door. The children rode tricycles & scooters, whizzing around their parents. I could tell these people were kind. I could tell I would love them if I only had the guts to walk down & introduce myself. So I did the next best thing. In my cowardly & shy state I sent My eldest with his shiny new bike & my husband down to test the waters. They were welcomed with open arms. So I made treats for the neighbors the following day & delivered them. Soon a dinner invite & then we too were pulling out our camp chairs & talking about kids & sports & places we once called home. This was our new home. To say the change from rural Appalachia to the big houses of suburbia in our city was easy would be a huge lie. It was hard. So incredibly hard. I was lonely & cried during every single evening run for easily a year. I cried in target as I looked at the women with their prada & kate & gucci. I didn't fit. I wanted the hills & history back. I wanted my Cumberland Gap ward family back (heaven knows I still do!!!!). Having sweet neighbors who became our dearest friends eased the transition. One of the first things I did when we moved here was set up a lemonade stand on the day of the spring neighborhood yard sale. We hard sweets & cold lemonade. The following year we picked an organization to donate the money to. We have done that ever since. The kids feel so proud of what they have accomplished & not even once has a child fussed about giving the money away to someone in need. These children on our street are the cream of the crop! The best of the best. Smart! Big hearted! I feel like they are mine. I love them. In the fall I was waiting at the bus stop for the 4 school aged babes. one of the sweet little girls next door came down the steps of the bus & fell into my arms crying. She had had a tiff at school with a girlfriend & was hurting. She held onto me tight. I cried with her. I cried because she was hurting, but also because i just love her. I love them all. & that is why posting the pictures of this last lemonade stand is literally taking the breath from my lungs. Its a suffocating feeling. I cannot believe this is the end. I cannot believe I won't be forcing all these little ones together for a picture at the rock next to Nat's house before Homecoming games & proms. I pictured T & A awkwardly exchanging valentines well into their high school years just because Gabby & I love it.  I have fond memories of these growing children. Our lemonade stands being only the start of them. I can't help but hope that they will remember us always. 
Okay I am pulling the trigger on this. 
Posting this feels very much like the end of our story here.
& it hurts.
a lot.

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