I’ve been trying to come up with the exact words of how I’m feeling about moving into my new apartment, and it’s been way harder than I thought. After I left my aunt and uncle’s tonight someone asked me if it was a bittersweet shit-just-got-real moment and I told them it was more like an overwhelming sense of gratitude.
Over the past 10 months not only has my family given me a place to stay, but they’ve involved me in their lives. I knew it was going to be hard moving away from my mom, dad and sister, but I don’t think I realized right off the bat how much easier it was going to be with family around. We went out for countless dinners and outings that allowed me to get to know them better.
I was actually nervous at first to live with my aunt because we’d never gotten to spend more than a week or so together at a time in the almost 20 years that we’ve known each other, and I felt like I didn’t really know her that well. That nervousness quickly went out the window. Kelley is thoughtful, kind, strong, warm, generous and just generally an amazing woman. She’s wonderful with my cousin, her drive is inspiring, and her sense of humor is right up my alley. I feel privileged to have gotten to know her and now I don’t even remember what it was like before. Not only is Kelley my aunt, but now I’d consider her a friend as well.
My uncle, Pete, who also happens to be my godfather, has always been pretty easy to get along with. Before moving out here he would hint that the scenery was beautiful and that it would be great to have more family on the west coast. Once I decided that Seattle was my next destination he was more than generous with knowledge, helping out with my car when it got shipped, picking me up from the airport when I landed January 19th, and taking me in with open arms. He helped facilitate the process that eventually got me my job at Microsoft. I never felt like I was a guest at their house, and subsequently it became my home.
As I was getting ready to leave, my aunt told me to keep my key, and that I was welcome at the house whenever I wanted. That’s about the time I couldn’t hold back the tears anymore. On my way to the apartment she sent me a text that read, “A few tears after you left…we love you!” I don’t know that I’ll ever have the exact words to express how fortunate I feel to have them all in my life, but hopefully this will suffice.
I love you guys more than I can express.