As we come to the end of 2010, I can't believe how much has changed this year.
At the start of this year, we were feeling like we would be moving in August to whoever accepted Paul into a PhD program. He had applied at 10 different schools, so we were pretty optimistic. It was a difficult time as the rejection letters started coming in. We had heard from almost everyone and started making alternate plans - to stay in Winnipeg, to travel, for Paul to find some temporary work - when we finally heard from Memorial University in May. We went from "we're likely staying" to "we're definitely moving to St. John's" within the span of a week. It was an overwhelming time!
In the midst of this, we decided we wanted to have another child - a sibling for G that was close to her age. I assumed that it might take some time, but pretty much the moment we even considered trying, I was pregnant. We were (and are) thrilled, but in the future, I may plan a bit better then December!
If I could choose a word to describe 2010, it would be bittersweet. Leaving our friends and our church in Winnipeg was incredibly hard and emotional. Selling all our stuff (except what would fit in 11 boxes and 5 suitcases) was very hard, but also very freeing. It was painful to let go of our books, and those are the possessions I miss the most. We had brought together our two libraries when we got married, and had built it up over the past 6 years to over 300 books. We kept about 60.
I left my job of the past seven years with the library to move to St. John's. It was difficult to do, but it was a decision I had made years earlier when Paul started to pursue graduate work - so it's not a decision I regret, but I do miss the work and my co-workers.
Of course, this year also had the death of my grandfather, which I wrote about on this blog. I continue to mourn him, especially at Christmastime. One of the Sufjan Stevens Christmas songs that we play often this season has a line "Call your Grandma on the phone, if she's living all alone" and this year it made me cry. I have gone from three living grandparents to one in a very short time.
In the "sweet" part of bittersweet, the birth of M was a wonderful event and as I wrote earlier, ended up having perfect timing. Being pregnant and now having a newborn has helped in fostering new friendships in St. John's. I went to the drop-in gym last week and two moms were very excited to see me with the new baby. It has also been sweet to see the temperature in the prairies dip below -20C, while we were still sitting at a balmy +10C!
We have also found that God has been amazing at providing for us - we were shorter on money then we expected when we moved here, and somehow there were multiple small blessings to get us through. From finding a perfect apartment to our caretaker suddenly showing up with heaps of clothing for G to unexpected funds from various sources to our new church being extremely welcoming and friendly, we are in awe of how God provides and gives us more then we need.
And now, on to 2011, hopefully more new friendships in our new city, raising two girls and hopefully buying a car (and some freedom) soon.