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If there were one word to describe my state of mind right now it would be Holy Shit! I know, that’s two words, but they run together as I sit in the chaos of my life today.

To put it nicely, I’m in a learning phase. My husband and I just moved from our home of 30 years out in the country to a duplex in town. To say this has been hard would be the ultimate understatement. We moved from the home where we were a family. The home where my little children ran up and down the stairs in their exuberance about everything. Where basketball was played in the driveway with plenty of spontaneous yells and exclamations of oh!, and over the years, with growing skill. The home where posters of sports figures and boy bands hung on bedroom walls. Where friends spent sleep-overs that lingered into weekends. So many memories and mementoes to leave behind.

I’m a believer in letting go of stuff. But when it came to letting go of baseball trophies and letter jackets that still hung in the closet and shelves of Nancy Drew books, it turned out to be like cutting off my arms and legs. Moving was something I’d wanted for a long time. Doing it was far different than the jubilation I had envisioned as we moved into a different phase of life.

When first the crying set in, a voice inside my head stated, “You’re over-reacting! Get a grip.” But the thing is, for those of us who are highly sensitive, there is no such thing. We naturally experience things intensely. The worst thing I could do for my state of mind would be to try to ignore the whole-body experience of loss and grief.

But at first I tried to. I quickly went numb, very flat. All I wanted was to burrow under the covers and stay there. My sensitive voice inside proclaimed, “I’m never coming out, I’m never talking to anyone every again, and I’m never going to do anything.”

Then some very good friends shared their stories of similar moves and encouraged me that I had every right to have strong feelings about such an upheaval. Acknowledgement is an amazing thing. Yes, my tears poured, even more so after the supportive words were offered and I stopped trying for a stiff upper lip. But crying and succumbing to my complete shutdown was what I needed to do. Just until I didn’t need to do it anymore. However long that may take.

Meanwhile, I’m grateful for the words my sons wrote in a Mother’s Day card the weekend my husband and I began moving out from the life we’d known. The card read: “There’s no place like home. Mom, no matter where I go or how grown-up I get, ‘Home’ will always be wherever you are.”

Two bleeding hearts isolated on white background © Nguyen Thai | Dreamstime Stock Photos

How did they know the perfect words to gift me with on that weekend? They’re sensitive, too.