Moving from Home

I usually post every Tuesday, but the one I had scheduled for yesterday just didn’t fit with what I’m doing in life right now, and I figured that I’d just post a day late this week.

See, yesterday I was moving into my new place in Ottawa.

We packed up a trailer yesterday morning (after about 2 hours of trying to find a certain adapter for the car), and then my grandpa moved me and my friend Joanna up to our condo. I brought pretty much all of my furniture that I’m taking from home, and my room looks pretty bare. It’s really weird sitting here, typing in my bedroom, without my bed being here, or many other pieces of furniture.

It’s been a strange transition period. I kind of flip-flop between being so panicked that I begin to have trouble controlling my emotions and counting down the days until I can finally move in and have my own place.

I’ve always had a lot of experiences growing up. We’re a family that travels, volunteers, and just generally does things. Doing crazy things doesn’t usually bother me–tell me we’re moving to Taiwan for 4 months and I’d probably be alright. But this is the first time I’ve ever done something on my own, where I’m leaving my parents and sister. For pete’s sake, I was even homeschooled. I do everything with my family.

But moving out and going to school hasn’t exactly sprung up on me out of nowhere, either. My parents started talking about university with us when we were 3 years old. It’s exciting, you get to start your own life and learn a bunch of cool things and meet some great life-long friends. I’ve been excited about university and starting life on my own for years. I actually have entries in my journals from when I was 11 and 12 daydreaming about what it will be like.

But I guess I never really realized that I’d have to leave my family. It just never really sunk in. I mean, obviously if you move to a different city you leave them, but until it actually happened, it never registered.

See, sitting in my room in Ottawa yesterday I was so excited. Joanna and I were bouncing ideas off each other for decorating, paint colours, and ikea furniture to buy. We have a beautiful kitchen, great living room, and are right across the road to the river.

But when I came back home that night, I didn’t feel excited. I felt alone.

Now that I’m getting ready to go to Ottawa, I don’t really have a home for the next 2 months. I’m not moved in completely to the condo yet, but I don’t even have a bed here. It’s an awkward transition period, and that leaves room for a lot of questions to creep in. Am I going to the right school? Am I taking the right courses? What if I hate it there? What if I don’t find any new friends?

Leaving home is scary. It’s a lot scarier than people tell you.

But even though it’s scary, and even though I feel alone sometimes, I know that this was never my home. Not here, not in Ottawa. My home is in heaven. And until I do get to finally go home, life is going to be scary. Life is going to give me doubts, and it’s going to make me question my decisions, whether big or small. And whether I hate it in Ottawa or not, and whether I make a hundred friends or none, I know that I have my dad to protect me, my mom to believe in me, and my sister to encourage me. But most of all, I have my God who will love me, and someday, finally, welcome me home.

So, Ottawa:

I’m ready. Bring it on.


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  • lisa

    Exciting times!

  • Denise Porter

    Rebecca … I found your blog through your Mum’s post on Facebook. Just wanted to encourage you a bit. I was 24 when I went to University. I didn’t have a friend to go with me, like you do, and I was moving into a dingy basement suite that I’d never seen before (rented over the phone because it was with a family who worked with a church (can’t remember which organization now). Anyway, it was January too — second semester and I was going 5 hrs. from home, to Regina where I didn’t know anyone. My parents left and I sat and cried. If I’d been a dog, I would have gone outside, started barking and chased the car! After a good cry, I dried my eyes and tried to unpack and make the little room a bit like home. I always thought only smart people when to university and I didn’t count myself in that group. But, after a week or so, I was into routine and realized it was a good move. I did meet friends and got involved in IVCF. I found out that you don’t have to be smart to go to university — you get out of it what you put into it as far as effort is concerned. I decided to keep going through the spring and summer sessions to maximize student loans and got a 3 yr. Bachelor of Arts degree in a 2.5 year period. Now, 24 years after convocation, my degree hangs in the middle of the living room wall. My husband, who was expelled from high school, told me it was important and hung it up there. I was a bit embarrassed wondering what people would think if they came to visit! But, he is right — it takes determination and hard work to be successful in post secondary school — and sacrifices (like moving away from your family) — but, in the end, you will look back on these years with fondness and be happy that you made the effort. It’s a transition, but you’ll be okay — especially with your Mum and Dad to guide you. They will miss you — and your sister will miss you too. But coming home for Thanksgiving and Christmas and Easter etc. will be special too! And someday you’ll be OLD (like me) and have grey hair and two kids running around and be glad you had some time to yourself to do what you wanted and make your own decisions and experience so many new things! I’ll have to follow your blog to see how it all pans out! Blessings today and always.

    • Rebecca Danielle Gregoire

      Thank you so much for the comment! Your story is such an encouragement! Yeah it’s pretty scary to move out, for sure, but I am excited to start to make my own way :) And God has really blessed me with the group of girls I’m living with, and that I’m getting to go somewhere where I have a strong Christian group located in already. It’s definitely going to be a lot of work, though! But it’ll be worth it! :) Thanks again for this! :)

  • Elizabeth Wray

    I have a small housewarming gift for your new home in Ottawa. When would be the right time to give it to you? Now, or when I visit you for the first time in Ottawa?

  • Dad

    Whatever comes, I know you will be able to handle it; I believe in you.

  • Gabrielle Theberge

    It’s too bad that you have concerns about being in Ottawa. I, however, am ridiculously excited!! Plus, everyone will love you. Extremely well-written article, by the way. Your structure is flawless.