We’ve lived in Lubbock a little over a year now. We’ve hit all our “first” milestones, with holidays and routines and experiencing all of the seasons. We’ve added a baby. We’ve found a church home. We’ve settled into our normal, and we’re so happy and blessed where we’re at.
I have had a few people ask me about it.
We moved 500 miles away from anyone we knew, including all of our family. We packed up all of our stuff along with a toddler, and drove from Colorado to West Texas for a new job and a new life.
What did that look like?
I thought I would share some of what our journey moving to Lubbock has looked like, and give some advice for people who may be moving away from the place they feel is home!
Find a Church Home
This was so, so important to us! We were very involved in ministry at our church in Colorado and knew we would need to get plugged in to a church in Texas quickly to find some stability. We had a church we were a part of from the very first week we were in Texas, and when we decided that wasn’t quite the place for us, we hunted (I’m talking multiple services at multiple churches every weekend) hard till we found our place. Finding your people as quickly as possible makes the transition smoother. As a believer Christians are “your people.” God designed the Church to be a Family, so wherever you move to, you should have your Family. It’s so helpful to have your “last minute” people for help with a project, a quick lunch date, emergency childcare, holiday dinners, and postpartum meal trains!
Meet Your Neighbors
Depending on what kind of background you’re from, this can feel a little awkward. Just embrace the awkward, friends. We’ve been trying to make our neighbors our mission field (meaning non-Christians we’re in relationship with and sharing Jesus with), and just inviting them into community with us. I think when we first moved we tried to wait for perfect moments to introduce ourselves and make it all nice, but it ended up just taking a lot longer to meet anyone and still wasn’t even that much less awkward. Knowing your neighbors makes being home a lot nicer when you have people to say hello to or when you need a friendly face in the midst of all your new place unknowns. Bring over a plate of cookies, go outside when you see them outside, have them over for dinner. Almost everyone is waiting for someone else to go first! Let it be you!
Be Prepared for a Season of Giving
Go into a new move prepared for a season of giving! You’ll be putting yourself out there a lot. Trying new things, going new places, learning your new Walmart. All your relationships will take some work. Everywhere you go you’re “exploring” and “discovering” for a while. Everything is new and nothing is comfortable yet. It was super helpful for me to enter into this season knowing it would be one of giving a lot of myself and of feeling a bit uncomfortable before I got to settle in to my new normal and feel adjusted.
Find Your “Place”
When everything feels uprooted and unsure, find a special place. It can be a coffee shop, the Target closest to your house, a favorite restaurant, or a park. Pick a place that you go to often and learn to know well, so you can go there when you need something familiar in an unfamiliar season of life. For me, those places were Walmart and a smoothie place near our house. I knew how to get there without having to look it up on a map, and I could walk right in and knew what to expect.
Don’t Be Afraid to Call
You don’t have to have it all together. I’ve learned you can completely love where you’re at, and still need to call your mom sometimes. The feelings come and go. Some weeks or months I can go a while without really missing our families in Colorado. I have a great conversation with a new friend over coffee, we have a fun game day with people from church, and I get all my errands done no problem with two kids in tow. Other times there will be several times in one day I just want my brother to get that random, obscure movie quote I just threw out, I miss the convenience of just dropping the kids off with my in-laws for a couple hours so I can go grocery shopping by myself, or I ache to have all our youth group boys over for board games and pizza like we used to. None of those feelings are wrong. It’s ok for there to be a bunch of feelings at one time. And it’s ok to call your best friend to tell them all about the new things going on because you need them to laugh and cry with you about it.
Side note: You can grieve old and new seasons. We came out of such a blessed season, filled with deep relationships, our newly-married memories, and being able to pour out to other people around us. Here in Texas we have entered into a sweet season of rest and restoration, as well as family direction and spiritual growth. Both have been amazing and it’s ok for us to both grieve what we lost and celebrate what we’re gaining.
Ask God How He Wants to Grow You
Oftentimes we just want to work on all of us. “Change my heart, God. Help me grow.” But change and growth are actually pretty broad. Keep running to Jesus to fill you up in a time that may take a lot from you, and wait to see which areas He may be working on in your heart. There are so many opportunities to grow when you move to a new place, so keep your ears tuned in to Him and the specific areas He may be wanting to focus on during this new season.
I hope this blessed you, friends! Would love to hear what made a big move easier for you, or how you’ve grown through it!