Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Moving house aged 2 3/4 : the visit

We went to see The House today. All of us. A grand deputation consisting of B, me, L, A, S and my parents, flown up for the day to see what they're losing us to.

I've been hyping L up about The House since our offer was accepted, trying to get her excited about the prospect of moving in the hope that it will make the transition easier.

And I think we can say it was a complete failure.

We arrived, after two hours in the car, L crotchety:

"No. This isn't my new house. I'm not going to live here"

That was the high point. Each room we went into she found something else she didn't like, or something else that was wrong, or some other reason why this was not, adamantly not her new house. And all the while I desperately tried to enthuse her, while feeling my enthusiasm for the place ebb away...

We left and I realised that now I didn't want to live there either.

Now, I know that's ridiculous, and I know that she's two and doesn't understand, and I know that my jollying her along will only have made her more determined not to like it (she was in that sort of mood) but I'm also really worried that the transition is going to be much harder than I expected.

L and I had a little chat later on. I realised that she probably thought that we were buying and leaving more than just the bricks and mortar. So I explained to her that the man was going to take all his stuff away, and we were going to bring all her toys and clothes and her bed and our sofa and put them in the new house so that it was like the old house only bigger and better. And she said to me:

"and he's going to take his dogs (L not a big dog fan)...

...but he's going to leave the cat for us."

Hmmm . Am now wondering how high a cat-shaped price we're prepared to pay for a smooth ride (I'm told that she'd prefer a pink or yellow one - there's a whole nother disappointment to come there.)

So I thought we were ok. But then she had a night terror. She won't, apparently, remember it in the morning, but I will. And I will keep worrying about what it means for her to have her home taken out from underneath her. And how, if at all, we can help.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone (and Scotland!)


  1. It is so hard, we moved when Maxi was small and we just made sure that his room was ornaised first, plus we bought a play tent and put it up in his room with books in and he loved it!

  2. Oh hun moving is hard and all I can say is *big hugs* she will get there with it in time :D

  3. We've been trying to move house for the last 3 years - it nearly happened 2 years ago, but then the sale of our own house fell through, and the market collapsed.... but I keep on promising them a larger garden to play in (any garden would be good!) My elder son was also concerned that he'd have to leave everything behind him until I explained otherwise. I'm hoping that by the time we eventually do move, he'll be used to the idea of it.

  4. That's really hard. We're thinking of moving, and I'm worried about how inflexible the kids will be. It was easier with only a 1yr old.

  5. Oh dear, you've got me a wee bit jittery. Can I just copy and paste your blog entry into mine when we go to Berlin?? We're not even taking their beds! Ha, ha, ha (nervous laughter!). I was hoping a couple of sticker books and some Mickey Mouse Clubhouse DVD's would seal the deal...oh crap.

  6. Moving is so hard!! I really hope it goes well for you. Big hugs and thinking of you in the meantime!

  7. Hello. Thinking of you as I know night terrors are horrid - T has them. He gets so desperate and I feel so helpless as there is little I can do but just be there.

    We moved back from Kyrgyzstan when T was two so he was young enough not really to understand but old enough to say some heartbreaking things - he saw a "hill" from the motorway and said "mountains, go home"!

    All I can helpfully say is good luck and children often are more resilient that we give them credit for and can surprise us over difficult things.

    And I loved the crocus photo and L's comment about wanting to remember it was 'lello inside. It's a great reminder that children are so good at teaching us to stop and look at the simple but important details in life that we miss by rushing around.

  8. Mad Mummy - Thank you. I think you're definitely right about getting their rooms ready first. The girls aren't going to be there for the actual move and I'm hoping that by the time they arrive we'll have set up their rooms and THE PLAYROOM (I'm most excited about having a playroom) and that will help...

    Hayley - thank you...

    Jude - My mum tells me that when we moved (I was seven) I was equally unimpressed for a while. I suspect that change is never going to be easy for them, but I can also say that I totally don't remember anything about it other than going to spend TWO WHOLE DAYS with my friend Catharine...(about which I was very excited...)

    Mwa - good luck with the decision, it's not easy is it?

    Fiona - Hmm! Berlin! Maybe I have it easy!!! But I think the stickers is a genius plan, and I'm hoping that Charlie and Lola will have moved house somewhere along the line... I actually think our mistake was to take her there before it actually happened. I reckon we'd just have been better to go "ok, here we are, new house, get on with it..." Too late now though!

    Organic Motherhood - thank you. Am sure it will be a huge learning curve for all of us!

    Motherhood and Anarchy - Thank you for the hints and the experience and the nice comments on the picture. Will be posting again about night terrors if she has any more. She hasn't since, but it really freaked me out - she was so distressed and I couldn't wake her up or make her respond to me. Which is apparently classic night terror, but I didn't know that then... The good news though is that apparently we did the right stuff (in so far as you can do anything...) And we'll know if there's ever a next time.


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