My family and I recently moved to Minnesota from Massachusetts. I tell people that it’s because I’m such a big fan of the Mary Tyler Moore show and want to be close to the statue in Minneapolis or that I was sick of Boston sports teams winning so much or that I wanted a colder winter. In all seriousness, it was a planned move to support my wife’s career and our family's sanity. Val has been working for a company based in Minneapolis and traveling 2-3 times per month. Being a voice talent, I can work from anywhere…and, as an added bonus, my voice comes with me!
That’s not to say that moving halfway across the country in my mid-to-late forties with two children was easy. Every mention of our move involved conversations about how cold the winters and how nice Minnesotans are. There were also lots of tearful good-byes over the last two months of our time in Massachusetts. It constantly felt like we were attending our own funerals, and the grief over the loss of our old life was real. However, it was also a realization that my family had made a net positive impact in our community. Hopefully we can do that in Minnesota as well.
So, my son and I set out on the road while my wife and daughter flew. Along the way we stopped in Cleveland to take in an Indians game where the people working concessions are among the nicest I’ve ever met. There’s also a statue of Jim Thome that makes me shiver with memories of him destroying the Red Sox in the late ‘90s. After the game we got lost trying to find our car after being shuffled out of the wrong gate. Thanks to a police officer we found our way back. Then we couldn’t find a hotel room because of various state athletic tournaments. Luckily someone at one full hotel found us a room – the only room- just outside of Toledo. We also stopped in Chicago, after a lengthy traffic jam in Gary, Indiana, for a Cubs game where we got to see Victor Caratini, a backup catcher who started at first base, take a turn pitching and make a “Jeter jump” play coming off the mound as the Cubs were getting smoked by the Mets. From Chicago we drove through Illinois and Wisconsin our new home in Minnesota, as I counted deer carcasses along the road.
Back in Massachusetts life moved forward: someone else is living in our condo and driving past the five speed bumps to get there. According to social media friends and family are spending some time at the beach this summer. The kids my son has played baseball with the past few summers made it to the regional semifinals of the Little League World Series Tournament.
Our lives have moved on also. Now that we’re here, we’ve been welcomed as part of our neighborhood in a way that never happened this quickly back in Massachusetts. My kids can frequently be found playing with other kids from the neighborhood. One set of neighbors shows movies in their driveway, another set of neighbors invited us for s’mores. The neighborhood kids play “night games:” while my wife and I watch the fireflies in our backyard. My son has found a summer baseball league and his coach is hoping to have him on his fall team. My daughter is excited to play soccer.
Soon it will be time to go back to school, and my kids will be missed but will be creating their own new lives. As will my wife and I. My wife has her colleagues and her work in Minneapolis, and I have my business. My studio is up and running, and I keep getting scripts from clients who want to hear the sound of my voice on their projects. Although I had to give up my part time job recording underwriting announcements for WBUR, I don’t have to start completely fresh thanks to the Internet.
Life does indeed go on.