Monday, December 1, 2014

The Relocation Shuffle


I'm in a place where I mostly think I am totally capable of not only getting an interview but getting a residency and yet I wake up from dreams where I am counting by 5 and the phone is ringing and the printer is beeping about a paper jam and someone is yelling at my tech about something that the tech has no control over and it is 2pm and I haven't had a break and I won't get one. So I guess I could say my confidence is not high all the time but is high enough that I'm getting along with applying to residencies.

And jobs. Also applying for jobs. I have had 7 interviews so far and one "forget this, we aren't hiring you" response, so overall not bad.

In all things, we are free to relocate if my job dictates. I think we can move the kid to one new city between now and when she's grown so this is actually a very big choice. There's some consideration that I will go during the week for a job and the family will stay here so we can move after a residency. One of the local pharmacies (we had 1 in a grocery store, 3 at big box stores, 1 chain, 2 independents, 2 at the hospital) just closed and another shrank its hours so I worry that working in town won't be an option.

When I'm not debating which of the zillion residencies to focus on applying for, I'm considering how on earth we could leap and move for a job. One of the considerations is that we have a lot of great things in place for the kid now and that's hard to find. She has a tiny class (that is 25% Caucasian, a bit less than our neighborhood but not too far out from the under 12 population demographics) and a small school that supports her with all the quirky services she needs to thrive. I don't think it would be impossible to find this again but we got really lucky to live in a neighborhood that has an elementary that exactly meets her particular needs.

The other big thing on my mind is respite care. It's hard to manage a kid who is challenging all of the time. It's hard to find anyone willing to take care of her for any length of time if her label is known. We aren't stupid so we haven't told our usual respite care friends around town her diagnosis and they are still happy to have her for a few hours. She behaves like a saint at someone else's house right now so that's helpful. I don't expect it to last. Overnights we have mostly been relying on family but they live far enough away that we can only do that maybe 3 times a year. If we move farther away we lose that help. Maybe. We could move closer to a big chunk of family too. Maybe. There's some discussion that my in-laws would visit us more if we lived somewhere more interesting/near their vacation home, even if it were the same distance from their vacation home that we live at now where they come down twice a year at best.

We've also been discussing if we really want to move for good reasons or if we want to move because we just aren't used to staying put this long. This is our third year here and the longest we've lived anywhere since we got married. I really found this video over at Rage Against The Minivan an interesting discussion. Does where you live shape your life? Tremendously so, yes. In my experience it does. Are there communities around you can join or are they all closed (or nonexistent)? [By communities, I mean things like churches or book groups or scouts or community service groups or the PTA.] Are there things you want to do nearby? What about shopping and restaurants? Do you want to do either of those in town or would you rather take a weekend trip somewhere?

My criteria for a place to live is as follows:
  • Must have pizza restaurant, preferably delivery
  • Must have a community of faith I'm comfortable being a part of
  • Must have a job for me and accessibility to a job for the spouse
  • Must have schools with support for the kid or that are willing to figure out how to support her
  • Must have childcare available
  • Strongly prefer a red big box store be within 90 minutes
  • Strongly prefer it is possible to get package delivery beyond the mail
  • Strongly prefer interesting outdoor recreational opportunities be readily available
  • Prefer limited constant wind
That doesn't actually narrow things down one bit. I'm feeling like caution is warranted rather than jumping at the perfect job, but at the same time, I'd rather go somewhere and have a great job than stay here with ho-hum options and no real reason to be here aside from "we already are" and pretty good schools.

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