When the family moved to the other side of the country it afforded everyone in the family a chance to make changes. The new community was a clean slate upon which to create new situations.
The children, all three of them, would be going to a new school and would be making new friends. The father would be starting a new job and would have a chance to improve his life situation and also make new friends.
With all the kids in school now the mother planned on enrolling at the university in order to finish her desire for a degree. She would soon enter the work force and have a career of her own.
All the old friends and relatives back on the side of the country from which the family came were now all history. Sure, there may be some letters written and cards sent as well as emails but that would soon fade and the family focus would be on everything new in a new place.
The father knew that when starting a new life it was easy to slip back into old habits. But he was resolute in trying to avoid that from happening. Upon arrival in the new home he gave up drinking as well as a few other lesser bad habits. And he promised himself that he would be more discerning in his choice of new friends. Not only was he leaving his old job behind but he was also leaving his old circle of friends which he had been part of since his teen years. When hanging out with them it was too easy to waste time and get in trouble.
Though it pained her greatly, the mother had left behind the man she had secretly loved since high school — who was not her husband. With an entire country between them she would no longer be tempted and she could finally release him from her thoughts. She promised herself to focus her attention on re-invigorating her marriage.
The oldest child, a girl, was an introvert back on the other side of the country. Arriving at the new school she was intent on breaking out of her shell and becoming popular. None of the new kids knew her or knew of the embarrassing episodes from her past. For her, the move provided her with the opportunity of a lifetime to become the kind of person she wanted to be.
The middle child, a boy, left several bullies behind with the move. His resolution was to become tougher. The new kids did not know that he was a wimp and he was not going to give them cause to think of him that way.
The youngest child, a girl, had no resolutions. To her, moving across the country was not much different than moving from first grade to second grade. Now that she was about to move on to third grade life was merely progressing as it was meant to.
All moved into their new home, the family spent the last weekend before the new school year started at the beach. They seemed closer to each other than ever before. After all, none of them had friends yet; they only had each other.
They also seemed happy. There is a lot of excitement to be found in new things and new possibilities. There was a lot of negativity left behind at their old home. Now, on the other side of the country, everything was new and everything was positive. Their life situation had become exhilarating.
The father took a moment to look out over the ocean. It was a whole different ocean than the one he had occasionally looked out over back on the other side of the country but it was just as intense and powerful. The waves lapping up on the beach seemed to cleanse him and empower him.
He wondered what life in this new land would be like ten years into the future. Would the family still be together and be as happy as at that moment? Would he be able to provide the love and energy to guide the family through all challenges and keep the joy growing? Would he be strong enough?
As he stared out toward the horizon he could feel the immensity and power of that ocean. Taking some deep breaths, he drew that power into him. He could feel his strength increasing. Silently, he gave thanks for the opportunity to start anew. As a smile spread across his face he realized that each new day provides that same opportunity.
It was not necessary to move across the country… but it sure helped.