Surviving A Move: Our Story

In January of 2012 our family moved from Minnesota to Tennessee. This is the story of how we got here.

For you to truly understand our story, I need to rewind back a few years before we moved. I’ll start with 2008. In January of that year, after suffering for a couple of days with a headache, my mom passed away. To say we were shocked would be a huge understatement. Losing her was traumatic. So traumatic, that my body physically reacted and I ended up in the emergency room with SVT (my heart was racing so fast, it was hard to catch my breath).  That was the beginning of a very hard season for our family.

Less than a year after my mom’s death, we were expecting baby #3. It was a difficult pregnancy. I was so sick. It culminated with several weeks of bedrest to keep my preterm labor at bay. That was a long, lonely time. After the birth of a healthy baby boy (Isaac), I was ready to re-enter the things we had put aside for a bit including the things where we were connected at our church.

We went back to our church with our new baby and found that we were having a hard time connecting at all with anyone. We reached out several times to different people. We basically heard a message that said, “we don’t have room in our lives for you.” Coming out of this hard season, I was so hungry for friendship and we were not finding it. One more loss. And it was a big one. I couldn’t believe that after attending a church for 10 years, I could feel so lonely there. Nathan and I talked and we decided it was time to move on.

If you’re keeping track, that’s three big life changing events in a very short period of time.

A month after we decided to leave our church, Nathan received a demotion at work. That started a season at Nathan’s job that was really bizarre. Right before the job change, he was forced to hire someone who didn’t really want the position and wasn’t actually qualified for it. That ended up being a disaster. Through all the changes at Nathan’s work, we knew it was time to look for a different position. He had been there for 10 years and we didn’t take this change lightly.

Nathan interviewed for and was offered two different positions in 2010. One would have taken us to Colorado Springs. The other would have taken us to Nebraska. We didn’t feel completely settled about either one. Mostly, we were worried about selling a house that we owed more on than it was worth to sell. So, we turned down both job offers and Nathan settled into a new routine at the place he had worked for years. He was no longer the director of his department and the transition went well. His new boss, Jeff,  was encouraging and a good leader.  Several months after the dust settled of several political things that Jeff had the privilege of handling, including terminating the employee that Nathan had been forced to hire, Nathan told Jeff the entire story of what had transpired before he arrived. Jeff was dumbfounded. I remember asking Nathan, “What did he say when you told him all of that?”. Nathan said, “He asked me why in the world I stayed.”

A few months later, we started talking again about making a job change. One day, I was reading about an employer and was impressed with how the team members seemed to be treated. I decided to see if the company had any openings that fit Nathan. They did. I read the job description to him and his eyes lit up. It was exactly what he wanted to do: web development. Then I told him the last detail I had held back. “It’s in Tennessee.”

Two days later, Nathan decided it wouldn’t hurt to fill out the application and submit a code sample.

4 months later, we were moving to Tennessee.

This is what our “babies” looked like that year.

Isaac: 2 years old, Audrey: 5 years old, and Ethan: 6 years old.




This is a photo of my dad buckling the kids in the car the day we left Minnesota:



This is what they look like now:


There are about 5 million details I left out, but I included the important ones.

What is interesting to me is that it was a whole string of traumatic losses that really put us in a position of being willing to make a big change. That set the tone for our move. Not everyone moves with that kind of motivation. We were sad to say goodbye to friends and family, but, beyond that, we were very excited about a fresh start in a brand new place.

How about you? Did you leave a painful situation when you moved or was it a place where you were happy to stay?

Come back tomorrow! We’re going to talk about how those issues we thought we were moving away from, sneak into our luggage and follow us 🙂 !


8 thoughts on “Surviving A Move: Our Story

  1. A friend told me about your blog and im so excited to read your insight as we are in the “planning stages” of our big move! We live in AZ and just sold our home. My husband and i leave for NC next week to check out schools, homes etc as we are planning our BIG move in May! Im so excited for this fresh start too….

  2. For us, Michigan was a happy place. All of Jud’s family and some of mine lived there, we were happy and involved in our church and homeschooling community, and Jud had a great paying job that allowed him to work remotely from home. But a conversation about a ” job” around a Christmas tree almost 4 years ago continued to move our hearts that we were being called to do more, and now here we are in Tennessee.

  3. I was scape goat by an entire community. People called my a liar when I listed my accomplishments. The also accused me of things I did not do and what is more most of them where so sure that they where right. I plunged into a deep depression that ended in drug abuse and alcoholism. I had no friends my family was estranged. I felt guilt for things that i didn’t do and tremendous more for things I did. I longed for death and resentment grew.

    Long story short. I went to rehab and eventually got a better job with more returns. Life is not perfect and there are huge scars on my psyche. But my relationship with God is stronger and I grow every day.

    1. Nathan, I’m so sorry to hear about all that you went through. It sounds so painful. I’m glad your relationship with God is solid. It makes all the difference.

  4. We did leave after traumatic losses, though different than yours, still totally resonating with what you wrote! My parents go to Watertown EFC and I found your blog through Chelsea. We just moved last month and I”m looking forward to reading your posts!

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