The end of an era

My friend Jen (as opposed to Jenn or Jenni) is moving.  She and her family are moving to a lovely new bigger home with a big yard for her two boys to run around in.  I think it’s great she’s moving.

However, she’s moving from the only home I’ve known her in.  When I think of Jen, I think of that house.  When we talk on the phone, I can picture exactly where she is in the house.  I first went there in college, while her mother was alive, and got to see Jen’s infamous closet full of signatures and quotes and funny sayings from friends.  I insisted on signing the closet as well.  The next time I went back was when her mom passed away, when we managed to find laughter in planning the funeral mass and toasted to her mom with a couple of beers.  Josh and I surprised Jen once when we were traveling through her town and I still laugh when I remember how she came out of the bathroom, saw us standing in her house, and walked back into the bathroom.  I came back for her wedding, when the house was full of daisies and bridesmaids.  Josh and I came back for a planned visit, when we spent nights with Jen and her husband playing cards, laughing hysterical over who knows what now, and seeing all her city has to offer. 

I surprised her again when she was on bedrest with her first child, spending the week just hanging out at her house, pampering her pregnant self, laughing over things.  I returned a few days after she had that baby, then again when she had her second child, our godson.  This past summer, we brought the kids with us to stay in their tiny home for the baptism of said godchild, introducing our country kids to city life (they adapted well.)  Even when two of mine caught a stomach bug and threw up and her two year old was thrown off by all the strangers in his house, we laughed and joked about if our friendship would survive this visit.  It did.

But now, she’s moving.  And it’s a good thing.  Yet I have to admit, when I saw her house listed online, I got more than a little sentimental.  To me, it will always be Jen’s house, where I know where the Advil is and am known to her neighbors as “Jen’s college friend”.  That place has always been a place of laughter, but I know that part won’t end, because the laughter came from Jen. 

Even now, we can joke about her moving.  She’s said she’ll have to call me up and remind her what her new address is.  I’ve joked to another friend that I have to get blueprints to Jen’s new house, so I can have a visual to which room she is in when we’re talking on the phone.  We’ve also joked that we should have one last party at Jen’s – though that won’t happen for me as she lives in a different state.

What can I say?  I’m a sentimental gal who gets attached to places.  But it does seem like the end of an era.