I just tracked the moving boxes I ordered from uhaul.com. They’re going to be here tomorrow. That’s really scary to me. It makes it real. I’m am absolutely DREADING packing up all of our belongings AGAIN.
Theoretically, this will be the last time until we get a house. However, that was the plan the last two times too. We can see how well that worked out.
I think the problem is that it’s really hard to figure out what’s best for a family. When it’s just you, you have the luxury of taking risks and, if they don’t work out, you can just learn your lesson and move on. Now, any mistakes we make effect two other people besides us.
I figure we have until Andy starts kindergarten (fall 2011) to get it figured out. I moved around a lot, and I don’t want to to that to my kids. I want them to be in the same school system for their entire school career. I want them to learn about lasting friendships and the need to resolve conflicts. I never really had to learn how to resolve conflicts. Not major ones, anyway. If I had a falling out with a schoolmate, it wasn’t that big of a deal. I just had to do a little bit of damage control because it was inevitable that my family would be moving within a few months.
There are so many lessons that children learn in school that have nothing to do with academics. Those lessons are probably a lot more valuable to success in life than a lot of the lessons they learn in the classroom. Social skills and interpersonal skills are hugely important to one’s success in life. I mean you probably won’t go very far unless you’ve learned lessons like: identifying emotions and expressing them appropriately, being sensitive and respectful to others’ emotions, communication with both peers and adults, handling stress in a productive manner, time management, conflict resolution, and peer interaction.
These types of lessons can be really difficult for children to learn in any environment, but I believe they’d be much easier to learn in a stable environment. An environment where they’re not constantly trying to acclimate themselves to their new surroundings. An environment where they’re familiar with the other children and the teachers and parents. In an experiment, there has to be a control to be able to determine results. Not to say children’s lives are an experiment, but growing up can feel like one big experiment. Something needs to be stable so children can learn how to appropriately maneuver the other variables in their lives.
Anyway, this was just a long tangent to state the fact that I think children need to stay in one school system. Obviously, that’s not always possible. Sometimes the reasons for moving them outweigh anything previously mentioned, but I don’t think that’s the case most of the time.
Children need a stable environment. We keep moving to find the best place to establish that stable environment. Hopefully, we’ve found it this time. Assuming we have, we’ll live in our new apartment for a year or so and then start building our house.
On paper, everything looks really good for this move. While I’m not excited about the details that come with moving (packing, change of address, changing insurance, new doctors, blah blah blah) I am excited about the reasons we’re moving. I think we may have found the perfect place to raise our family. I really hope we’re right. I’m so glad we have the opportunity to sort of check it out first. If we don’t like what we see during this year in our new apartment, I guess we’ll look for somewhere else. It’s really hard to make decisions that will effect other people for years to come.