March 28, 2015


i started blogging back in January of 2009.

i didn't have a clue what i was doing, i just knew i had a lot of things to say and i needed to say them.
not that anything i wrote back then was important or earth shattering or even interesting, i just had this desire to write. 

at the time, i was living in Provo, Utah. 

i was inbetween finishing cosmetology school and starting at BYU. i was broken up with the boy i had been dating but we were still seeing each other every day and making my life very, very confusing. 
and also, i was twenty years old. and there's usually a good, thick layer of immaturity and general uncertainty that accompanies twenty year old life to begin with. so add to that immaturity and uncertainty a break up that didn't quite break, an inbetween education period and being 2,000 miles away from my home and family and you get me-staring at a website called blogger trying to pour out all of my confusing thoughts and feelings in an effot to make something meaningful out of my mess.  add it all together and you get my eloquent graffiti. 

it's march of 2015 now. 6 years have passed and sometimes i feel like the girl who started this blog is just someone i used to know. a friend of a friend. certainly not me. other times i still feel so much like that girl that i almost forget that 6 years have passed. that i've been married for almost 5 years. that i've moved 7 times. that a lot, a whole freaking lot, has changed and happened. 

garrett and i moved to virginia in april of 2014. actually, to be more specific, we moved to virginia on my birthday in 2014. (no, i will never let garrett live down the fact that he made me pack a truck and drive 8 hours by myself on my birthday. it was the worst.) regardless, we moved to virginia and i fell in love with the tiny town we called home. we were only a few hours from family, garrett could literally walk to work and we made incredible friends (whose homes were also close enough to just walk to). i had hair clients every day. garrett had pals to play FIFA with. and gilly had a big back yard to romp around in and then run away from

i lived in savannah for a total of 14 years and while i love georgia (it will always be home. it will always be the place that i am from.) i never felt like i fit there. i always felt slightly out of place. but virginia felt like home. 

everything was really great. maybe even perfect. 

except for the reason we moved there to begin with.
garrett's job.
it didn't work out.
it wasn't what he wanted. and even though we knew we wouldn't be in virginia for ever and ever, we had hoped the job would fit for at least a few years. 
but it didn't. 

talking about new jobs and new locations and moving away made me cry every time it came up in conversation. i wanted garrett to be happy. i wanted him to love his job. i wanted his talents and education and hard work to be appreciated and put to use. but i didn't want to leave. 

we searched for jobs that garrett could take that would only take us a few hours away. 

south carolina, tennessee, maryland.
but nothing worked out. cold.

our search and application circumfrance gradually got wider and wider. 

texas, new york, illinois.
no responses. still cold.  

california, oregon, utah.

warmer. getting warmer.

i honestly couldn't tell you how many places garrett applied to.

at very least fifty. but probably more.

he found out about a job in Provo, Utah and applied. 

he got a friend of a friend to give him a recommendation and he almost immediately had an interview. 

we felt good. excited, even. 

the interview went well. and as much as i wasn't totally thrilled with the idea of living in utah again, i loved the idea of garrett being at a job he loved. i loved the idea of him coming home happy each day.

it felt like an eternity that we waited to hear back about the job. days dragged on. we were constantly praying. praying for an answer. praying for guidance and clear direction. praying for peace. every day we didn't hear back was harder than the one before. and we tried to not lose hope. but it was hard. so we kept praying. 

garrett likes to joke saying that his phone has never rung less than it did the month that we waited to hear about this job.

but it finally rang one evening. 

he got the job. the weight was lifted. our prayers were answered. 

and we were moving back to utah.

and we had two weeks to pack, say goodbye to everyone we could, drive across the country and find a place to live before garrett's start date.


i don't know if i've ever mentioned it before, but i hate moving. yes, i've moved every year for the past 7 years. no, it doesn't become any more enjoyable. i hate moving a whole lot. in fact,in my experience, it is everything i hate combined into a two week period of mayhem, eating weird meals to use up perishables in the refridgerator and the constant sound of packing tape being pulled out of its plastic mechanism. also, there always seems to be at least one incident where i have to untangle a buttload of hangers and i deplore untangling hangers. the thing is, i have never moved and not wanted to punch someone in the neck at least once.

and this move was no different. natch.

we drove to tennessee from virginia to say goodbye to my parents first. garrett drove the moving truck and i drove our car. 

i cried for thirty minutes after driving out of our little town. (and i think it was only partially due to the post-packing fatigue.) 

i know for certain it was in large part from saying goodbye to one of the greatest families i think i'll ever know. 

not featured is the lovely lady who took both of these photos. i love her all the same. also, elle, you're wearing the same shirt in both pictures and i think that's the best. 

they are incredible, incredible people. we were not their family but they treated us as though we were. and though we have tried, we will never be able to thank them enough for the kindness they showed us and for their genuine friendship. i think of them when i think of this quote from Elder Holland: 

"But when we speak of those who are instruments in the hand of God, we are reminded that not all angels are from the other side of the veil. Some of them we walk with and talk with-here, now, every day. Some of them reside in our own neighborhoods…Indeed heeaven never seems closer than when we see the love of God manifested in the kindess and devotion of people so good and so pure that angelic is the only word that comes to mind."

it's hard to say goodbye to so many people and things you love all at the same time. it's hard to trust that it's all really going to be okay. and it's scary to think that maybe people won't always be so nice. virginia was a warm, cozy bed. and moving was stepping onto a cold, tile floor with bare feet. rationally, you know you can't actually stay in bed all day, every day. but wouldn't it be nice? it's so comfortable and warm. 

rationally, i knew we couldn't stay in virginia forever. but it would have been nice. it was comfortable and warm. (well, not literally. it was actually fracking cold because it was february. but you get it.)

we got to spend some days in Tennessee with my parents before we left for utah. one of my sisters was able to come by while we were there so that we could say goodbye to her and her family. and those goodbyes were very hard, too. i wished i could see the rest of my family. my other siblings. their spouses. and the cutest kids in the world.

thinking about all of them, thinking about my parents being 2,000 miles away made (and still makes) my heart ache. moving to utah to go to school was exciting. but this was differnt. this was scary. this was permanent and what would i do without my family near by? all of the littles will grow up so quickly and i won't be able to see it happen. my heart broke thinking about them not remembering me. my heart broke thinking about my future children not knowing their cousins, their aunts and uncles or their nana and papa. 

moving is hard. 
growing up is hard. 
it's really hard to move 2,000 miles away from your family. 
because sometimes you just need them.

and it wasn't made any easier by the fact that leaving my parent's house didn't just mean moving to utah. it also meant climbing into a cold, uncomfortable and super loud moving truck to make the drive. the long drive. the three day long drive. (insert sad, weeping emoji face here.)

but somehow we chose to be grown ups. and we crawled in that squeaky, cold moving truck and headed west.

want to know something funny?

i grew up in georgia. i lived there until i was eighteen and then i moved to virginia to go to college. my college experience in virginia wasn't exactly what i was expecting and once the school year was finished, i didn't have a clue what i wanted to study. and i ended up applying and going to cosmetology school in utah. i lived in utah for four years. nine months after getting married, garrett decided he wanted to study graphic design and to study it at an art school. as it so happens, savannah college of art and design is located in savannah, georgia. the exact same city i grew up in. and so i moved back so that garrett could go to SCAD. we were there a little over three years and once garrett graduated he got a job as the graphic designer for the very same school he and i met at when we were eighteen. so we moved back to virginia. and, now, 11 months after moving to virginia, we are back in utah. again.

are you following?

georiga. virginia. utah. georgia. virginia. utah. 
stop judging me for not pointing to EXACT locations.

if we keep this up much longer there will be an engraved path across the country in this traingular shape and they will call it the Wessman Trail and garrett and i will travel it until the day we die. and our bones will be laid to rest somewhere along it. and i will probably end up haunting the highways. because i will literally not know how to stop travelling this path. and also because haunting a highway could be fun.

...where was i?

oh, yeah. utah.

i'm in utah.
and that still feels weird to me.
in some ways it feels like i've gone back in time. like i'm not here again, i'm just here still-only older. 

in other ways it feels like i was never even here at all. everything is so different and my life now is nothing like it was 7 years ago. it's like my memories from being here are more like the memories of a friend that i've heard so many times they've begun to feel like my own. but not really. 

we've been here two weeks now.
and i'm still getting used to everything.
i'm still missing virginia and family and friends every day. so much that it hurts sometimes. 

i'm still trying to find my way around.

i'm still wrapping my mind around this being home and not vacation.

but i'll get there. 
it just might take a few blog posts of me pouring out all of my semi-lucid, semi-disorganized thoughts and feelings. because i have all the same feelings i had back in 2009 when i started this blog. i just feel so in between. and the only way to land on solid ground is to write my way there. 

so i'll get there eventually.

i'll get there. 


lyrics:i met a girl who kept tattoos for homes that she had loved. if i were here i'd paint my body 'til all my skin was gone.

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