Monday, July 23, 2012

Full Circles and Magic, and Oh Yeah, We' MOVING!!

Tonight we ate dinner at FUEL, our favorite neighborhood restaurant, to symbolically punctuate all our change and to come full circle.  We ate at FUEL 3 years ago on the night we made an offer on our house. Today we accepted an offer to sell it. 

In the last three days Fredrik has accepted an offer to join the new company that was sold off from IBM in Raleigh, we have accepted an offer on our Charleston home, we purchased two cars, turned in our leased Subaru, and finalized the arrangements with the home we'll be moving into.  We've had showings on our home, movers walking through our home for moving estimates and quick conversations with home study agencies in NC to revise our adoption paperwork (hopefully quickly!).  AND we have a nephew due any minute now (come on Kim and Baby O!!)

HOLY COW...I guess I can now officially announce: WE'RE MOVING back to RALEIGH!!!!

So much has happened in the last few months that I haven't been able to share....but now I can.  Almost immediately after we applied to adopt Sweet Baby E we learned Fredrik's division of IBM was being sold to Toshiba.  It changed everything.  Suddenly, Fredrik was traveling ALL THE TIME and a large part of it was to Raleigh.

Fredrik has been able to work remotely for the last 8 years which has afforded us the experience of living in both NYC, and Charleston, SC. Not bad, right? And now we're making our way back to the mother ship.  Toshiba will keep the division headquarters in Raleigh, and Fredrik will now be closer to the middle of things. We think it's pretty important that our family is together as much as possible, especially with the adoption, so we're ALL going to go.

So now for the groovy, ironic, divine intervention type news. Buckle your seat belts.  I couldn't make this stuff up.

Once we realized we needed to move to Raleigh, I found a house online with a yoga studio that I just KNEW we needed to buy.  Kysa and I joined Fredrik on a business trip and we went to Raleigh prepared to make an offer.  Yep. I was THAT sure. We asked our "chosen family" friends, Jim and Glenda, to go with us to give us their unbiased opinion.

The yoga studio house wasn't as sexy in person as it was online. I was very disappointed, and our friends showed us that the house across the street from them was for sale.  I thought they were joking as I knew the neighborhood was out of our price range being a historic neighborhood, walking distance to downtown Raleigh, great schools, museums, restaurants, and best of all...closest proximity to them. 

Jim, a musician (and surfer!), has played/composed/improvised for more of my dance performances than I can count. Glenda and I have performed, taught, collaborated, and shared artistic vision and sisterhood for many, many years.  Glenda and I have slept under the stars together, danced in gas pump graveyards and cow pastures, she has known me through various life phases and hair colors. She spoke in our wedding ceremony and rapped at our reception.  She knows me in my bones. Their daughters read "The Velveteen Rabbit" at our wedding, the same sweet girls I babysat when I was in college. Now those college-aged girls babysit (spoil/love/play with) our daughter. 

So living across the street from the MaCrews seemed almost too perfect, too full circle-like, especially since we'll be moving in with little ones, and their youngest will be starting college next year. 

The only problem was that the house was completely out of our price range. Kind of a deal breaker, huh? But we were curious and we met the owner anyway, and he showed us the house. He and his wife had adopted a little girl from China nine years ago.  We loved the house, the vibe, the street, the proximity to friends and urban life, the fact that we could grow into the house because it's twice as big as our current home....but there was no way we could make the financial stretch.

And then it turned out Joe, the owner of the house, is an angel.
Yep. A real life angel.
Sometimes the impossible happens, sometimes things aren't too good to be true. 
Sometimes people have faith in you and you don't know why. 

Long story short, we're now moving into that house across the street from our dear friends and Joe has generously given us the opportunity to buy a home we couldn't otherwise afford over time... in a time frame that is possible for our family. Wow. wow. wow....
Hopefully you're still hanging in's about to get crazier still.

We put our Charleston home on the market about three weeks ago, and about a week ago we got an offer on the house.  After reviewing the offer we noticed the name seemed "interesting" so I did some Facebook stalking. 

The man who wanted to buy our home is from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Let that sink in. 

No, there is not an Ethiopian community here in Charleston.  I have never seen an Ethiopian in Charleston, other than the kids our friends have adopted.  As a matter of fact, one of the main reasons we're so anxious to move to Raleigh is to be in a more ethnically diverse community.  I don't believe in coincidence.  It was a sign.  

After pleading with my husband to just give the man our house in fear that if the deal didn't go through we'd have 10 more years before a referral, I was promptly asked by my sweet husband to let him handle the negotiations. I'm only slightly kidding. I wanted this man to have our house. It felt important, necessary, and somehow intrinsic to the master plan that is being slowly revealed to us.

Today we met the man who wants to buy our house.  He is a young man with strikingly beautiful Ethiopian features, kind eyes, and a slow yet easy smile.  I'm sure I stared and smiled way too much in a super creepy way as I looked for my son in his face. I do this every time I see an Ethiopian man young or old.  You know, taking in the texture of his eyebrows, his hairline, his hair, the straightness of his teeth, the shape of his face, the gentle politeness of his handshake, the quiet way he observed, the tone of his voice.  Our conversation was less than two minutes...Yep. I'm sure I was creepy.  Thank goodness Kysa is cute and distracting.

We didn't share with him our plans to adopt from Ethiopia, it didn't seem appropriate at the time or fair to him. But I got to lay eyes on a man from our son's homeland who followed some cosmic thread of divinity straight to our doorstep.  And he wanted to buy the doorstep and all that was attached to it! We stepped into a miracle and I attempted to soak it in. I'm still soaking it in.

I got to shake hands with the man who we hope will live in our beloved house after we are gone.  The house that supported our growth to a family of three, the house I lumbered around in like a big fat ghost when I was pregnant and couldn't sleep at night, the house I labored in with Kysa, and rocked her, and nursed her, and witnessed her first steps, and heard her first words.  The house that sheltered us through conceiving our adoption preparations and plans.  Our house has contained so much joy I'm not sure how we've managed to keep the roof on.

I couldn't have dreamed up a bigger/better/more beautiful plan. I couldn't think of a more perfect person to live in our perfect little house on Ashe Street.

This afternoon, not more than an hour after meeting this son of Ethiopia, we accepted his offer.  It feels so right.

I believe we are ready to move on, to pass along this happy, sweet space we've called home for three years.  I'm ready to take our family magic and grow it in another space. We have been given the opportunity to move forward into our future, into a home with more space to fill, supported and surrounded by faith, love and loved ones.  The momentum has been hard and fast, but we're ready to trust it and align with it.

What a beautiful, wild and magic ride.   

Feeling so blessed and grateful,

Oh, ironically, over 10 years ago, Glenda and I choreographed a duet called "Saftey Net" about relationships that become our support systems, our lifelines.  As the old philosophical question goes, does life imitate art or art imitate life?  I'm glad I get to live that question.

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