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Just before taking off from New York several weeks ago, I wrote on Facebook…

Goodbye New York. Hello Florida. Leap of Faith.

And it is. Like many things in life, there is no way of knowing how it will all work out.

I have a friend who six months ago decided to pull a George Costanza. It’s based on an episode of Seinfeld where George decides to do the opposite of his natural inclinations. My girlfriend is trying this.  She knew her old routines weren’t bringing her what she wanted. So now, whatever her natural inclination – she does the opposite. And you know what? The pieces of her life are falling into place.

I have another friend who did not think she had a drinking problem. But she stopped drinking anyway and suddenly things started working out for her. She’s been sober for a long time. Her life is still working out for her.

These are leaps of faith.

I am willing to take risks. In my 20s, I went to Montana because I wanted to be a reporter. At first, it did not seem to be a particularly good decision. I loved my job but I was freezing. And very lonely. At one point, I found myself having surgery after being dumped by a construction worker (these two things were not related) and I knew I was close to rock bottom. It didn’t help that my mother was clearly visibly torn between being at my bedside and being at the vet in Connecticut where her dog was also coincidentally having surgery.

Those were dark days for me. But that job got me my next job in Connecticut which was less freezing. And it’s also where I just happened to run into an old acquaintance named Rick. And my life was forever altered.

These days right now aren’t dark but they are challenging. I feel overwhelmed. I feel rundown. Every day I pray that my 3rd grader has a better day but she is still sobbing that she doesn’t like her new school. She misses our house. She misses her friends. She misses sledding (yes, I know, it’s still September.)

I understand how she feels. Because I feel the same way (minus the sledding). At least Dylan’s birthday falls on Yom Kippur this year. That should really cheer her up.

But this is the thing with leaps of faith. It’s not always so obvious how it’s all going to work out. That’s where the faith comes in.

I can envision happiness here. It’s just the details that are still fuzzy.

mama bird notes:

First of all, a welcome to one of my new advertisers, Suburban Underbelly.

Secondly, this post is sponsored by Reset Wellness, an organization that has created a program providing obesity intervention and academic enrichment to underprivileged children in the U.S..  Reset Wellness is opening a child wellness center in San Francisco and they need your help.

They want to help kids like 14-year-old Alexander Draper who is 555 lbs. His mother was charged with criminal neglect for letting him gain too much weight. Alexander was soon placed in foster care and taken away from his mother, as she faced her trial (2 felonies, 15 years, $50k bond). “Alexander Draper’s situation is all too common. There’s a fine line between neglect and miseducation,” states Reset Wellness founder Jamal Williams. “As a nonprofit, we’ve come up with a program that educates families on healthy lifestyles and holds them accountable.”

dv1613008The child wellness center will be the first of its kind and will feature hydraulic strength training circuits, vertical community gardens, technology smart academic classrooms, a childproof kitchen, and health counseling for families. To find out more about this project or to make a donation, visit here.

23 Responses to the leap

  • HonestMum says:

    Sending hugs from the UK, things will get better and you are so wise, it is all about leaps of faith.

    We moved from London after 11 years there to be closer to my family in the North (where I was born) once my first child was 1-it was a risk, to my career, I left my friends and identity in a lot of ways in the Capital but it was 100% the best thing we ever did.

    I still have my work, I go to London once a week, I’ve reconnected with old friendships, made new ones and have the support I craved from my family. A real leap of faith. Things will be brilliant, just you see x

  • Karin says:

    So sorry that this is such a stressful time. Remember, your followers/readers/fans adore you, are with you and are cheering you — and your family — on. (As my mom always advises, be kind to yourself.)

  • Karin says:

    One more thought — maybe one you’ve already pursued: Most schools have a social worker. He or she might be a good resource for your third-grader. 🙂

  • bitsy says:

    My heart really goes out to you. I’ve been there – so many times, as a kid and as an adult. It’s hard. It’s just plain hard. You’re in my thoughts.

  • Lanie says:

    I have watched you leap before. I know it is never easy but I always admire your ability to “envision (and then achieve) happiness”. Sending hugs and hope to all the Folbaums! xo

  • Jen says:

    Your willingness to take great chances in life is why I wanted to be your friend in Montana and after! (A place where I also took a leap and it paid off big time) Lots of love. xo

  • Becky says:

    I love your honesty. I’m sorry it’s hard now but I know it will get better. Here’s a HUGE hug for all of you from Wisconsin. (Those are the best hugs btw)

  • daphne says:

    Before you know it you and Dylan will be surrounded by friends drawn to your infectious personality. When we first moved we decided not to discuss anything until we let time (6 -12 months) go by, then suddenly, life was flowing.

  • Alex says:

    I think Daphne’s comment is great. You kinda just have to push through the crap for the first 6 months because nothing goes well in the first 6 months. Your house isn’t set up the way you want it, your kid doesn’t like the new school, you’re still figuring out where to shop for all the things you need…nothing feels right. But those things will slowly fall into place. Just think about when you moved to Rye. At first you felt lonely and disconnected. Then 6-12 months later you have a great circle of friends, your kids are happy, etc. Do one thing a week that is just for you and makes you feel good, i.e. go to a yoga class, take a walk on the beach, etc. Before you know it, things will be looking up. Just try to be patient with the process and know that you will not feel this way forever.

  • MN Mama says:

    Give yourself lots and lots of grace. Give others grace and more grace. Hang in there. I pray that Dylan finds a special friend who makes her feel less alone and more like FL is wonderful! Hang in there!

  • Christine says:

    Dear Mama Bird,

    Just wanted to let you know that this reader from Philly is cheering for you and your family! You are a brave mom who is a great role model for your children. I admire you as I get overwhelmed with just two; my boy-girl twins are almost four.

  • pamela says:

    I too appreciate the honesty. I used to read dozens of blogs but have dropped to just a tiny handful which includes yours.

    I just got so tired of the omnipresent “Pollyanna” tone of most of them—everything was always great, the kids were always sweet and active, families were always taking “awesome” vacations…

    I started reading at first for the humor (Oh the laughs we had!), but have stayed for the straight dope. You’re a great writer, funny and very clever. I have enjoyed getting to know your family. You feel like my “friend on the east coast who I’ve never spoken to and doesn’t know I exist, but she’s my friend damn it”.

    These are sure to be difficult days. Late summer in Florida? Gah!
    We lived for a year in Australia with a newborn daughter and me preg AGAIN when my daughter was 7 months. I hated it. I wanted to leave every single friggin’ day. But I knew I’d be glad to have seen it out, and I am. It’s really the biggest accomplishment of my life.
    Not that it makes it any easier to get through the day-today, but you know, you can do it.
    It’s just a huge drag and it really helps to say “This is a really huge drag!”.

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kelcey kintner