7 Asma’ 165 B.E. (Baha’i calendar)
Soundtrack in my head: Levi Tafari, “Duboetry”
Yes, I’m moving to another co-op, after 5 ½ years at my current one. A new co-op in a quiet neighborhood was needing members, and after deliberating and praying about it, I decided it was time for me to take the leap.
It was a very difficult decision for me because I feel like I’m leaving my current co-op at it’s peak. I’ve been here for so long precisely because it is a great co-op—well-organized, clean, warm and friendly. I think that there is more closeness in the co-op now than I have seen during my entire tenure here.
But I’ve always wanted to live in a more residential neighborhood. Downtown Madison just doesn’t feel like a real neighborhood to me. And while there’s a nice mix of people within my house, most of our neighbors are students. It’s odd—living here for so long, I think I almost began to think of myself as a college student, yet at the same time not fitting in with the other students. Nothing wrong with students per se. (Though I did have the police noise complaint number saved onto my cellphone.) It’s just that I’m in a different place in my life.
The neighborhood I’m moving into is quieter and has a wider variety of people. Lots of trees, a great place for going on a walk. I have the feeling that my thinking will shift considerably after I move. Things have been changing so much in the last year and a half and there seems to be no sign of it slowing down…
It was hard to tell my housemates that I was seriously looking into this. The first time I brought up the subject at a house meeting, there was a part of me that wanted to say at the same time, “No really, I’m not thinking about this. I mean I love you all and really I want to stay—I just lost my mind for a moment. Ignore what I just said.” Part of me felt like I was throwing away a diamond, and for what purpose? And when I finally reached my decision, it was hard to see the somewhat sad look on the faces of my closer friends in the house. But it’s not like I’m going very far. I’ll still hang out here from time to time.
No, it’s time for me to move on to a new adventure. I’ve always wanted to live in the neighborhood I’m moving to. I like the other people who will be at the new co-op, and I’ll have a say in who else joins.
Last night was my last house meeting at my current co-op. They asked me if I’d like to be the “honorary facilitator” running the house meeting for one last time, and I agreed. Most of the meeting was spent assigning work assignments for the next four months, and it was funny because this time, I was an observer rather than a participant. As the meeting drew to a close, I found it difficult to concentrate—probably because there was so much on my mind. The last thing we do in our meeting is something called “peeves and praises,” where we either highlight a little thing in the house of concern to us (being careful not to name names) or offer praises. I was the recipient of an unusually larege number of praises, and as each housemate spoke, I could feel a lump forming in my throat, and tears starting to well up in my eyes.
A party followed the meeting. It’s purpose was to welcome the four new house members, but there was also a sign there that said, “Congratulations!” We took group photos, including an interesting one with me posing with the four new members.
So I’m going to be busy for a little while. My room is already full of boxes. I don’t know what the Internet availability at the new house will be for the short term, but I’ll do my best to keep you all in the loop…