This past December, we moved.
It wasn’t intentionally, which I recognize seems an odd thing to say about buying a home. We had been looking at Open Houses for over a year, after all, getting a sense of what we wanted. Every Sunday after church in the warm months we would don jogging clothes and plan a route in a new neighborhood, stopping at each Open House to poke around. So we had a good sense of what we wanted, and this past November we were on just such a tour (though walking; we aren’t as ambitious when it’s cold out) when we walked into the home of our dreams.
“It’s too bad we’re not prepared,” we said to each other. “This home would be perfect.” So that we wouldn’t miss another opportunity, we contacted a realtor that evening and applied for a loan. Our realtor heard our story. “There’s no reason why this house can’t be yours,” she told us. Long story short, within a week our offer had been accepted; within a month, we had moved in.
What does this all have to do with baby loss, you may ask?
We moved to Chicago 2.5 years ago, into a lovely apartment in Little Italy with a rooftop deck and grand view of the city. That apartment was intentionally two bedrooms, one for us and one for the nursery we desperately hoped we’d need very soon. It became the apartment I got pregnant in (sort of), carried Ander for 24 weeks in, bled in, rushed to the hospital from, came home from the hospital empty handed to. It was the apartment that was filled with shelves of Ander’s blanket, hospital bracelet, pictures, his ashes. Out of my bedroom window, I could see the hospital where he spent his whole life.
We are now only 15 minutes away from there, and we return to that same hospital on a semi-regular basis for all of our family doctor appointments. We walk through our old neighborhood at times, but it’s not the same. Ander is with us; of course. His presence fills our new home, pictures of him grace the hallway, the office, our bedroom. His candle, his ashes, they are of course still with us. Yet moving felt like a small, new grief-hole all the same. We have literally moved on.