When you have lived in a major city a good part of your life and are used to walking from place to place and riding on public transportation versus driving in a car, it can certainly be a big adjustment when you relocate to the suburbs. It's here in the suburbs that you must rely on a car many times to get you from place to place.
However, there are indeed towns we are looking into as well with somewhat of an urban suburban feel and possibly with a main street and are close to the train station for me to easily get to and from work. In the meantime, since we wanted to be closest to family and reasonably near the train station and Sarah's school we chose a suburb with less of city-like feel to it.
Therefore, this has certainly been an adjustment for me since our move. Much of this could also be because we searched for a home and packed up in record time and went very fast, as we expected it likely would. I knew this would be the case but still it's taking time to settle into the change.
The same holds true for when you have kids and live in an urban environment and then move to suburbia. Moving from a major metropolis to a suburb can be a dramatic change for all involved especially when what you have been most used to is convenience.
As a city mom I spent much time carrying Sarah around in a sling or baby carrier walking around the neighborhood, running errands and also during jaunts on public transportation in and out of the city. When Sarah got older and a bit heavier for me to carry we did all these same things on foot with her in her stroller. Then, as she advanced we did the same things with her on a push car, scooter and tricycle. We also would frequent the playgrounds near our home often and daily, pending weather, and would see as many as ten to twenty kids at a time to play with.
Having moved to the suburbs much of this freedom for transportation on foot and getting around town is somewhat and completely limiting. And, the ability to make friends and meet new playmates has been slow and seems to require us to join either a house of worship or sometimes expensive kid-specific classes (e.g., The Little Gym, dance classes).
Don't get me wrong, I am not complaining (not exactly). I am just trying to adjust to a new way of doing things that I knew was going to be different. It's just taking me time to get used to this all. I knew what we were signing up for moving to a neighborhood with tree-lined streets with homes and backyards versus apartments and distances further away to doctors offices, school, grocery stores, playgrounds, etc.
There are many reasons why we chose to relocate to the burbs besides a great new job and to be closer to immediate family. Most importantly, we are setting up ground and foundation for Sarah. Her future is what's most important to us and so is establishing a home base where the schools are really good, where we can have more space in our home to spread out, be near by to family, and the cost of living enables us to provide a good quality of life.
The good news is, we are renting a house versus buying at the moment so that we can gauge where we really want to live in the coming year as we explore and discover neighborhoods and learn the lay of the land.
Change for some can be challenging. For me, once I get comfortable I don't typically like change. However, once I get settled in to something new and establish a routine then my comfort level increases. What can I say? I am a Type A personality. Yet, when it comes to Sarah and the life Daniel and I want to create for her, and possibly another sibling (no, I am not pregnant) moving to the suburbs was what we wanted and needed to do.
For the past two years Daniel and I have had this dream to come down to this neck of the woods for the various reasons mentioned above. Starting out in a new area without all that is familiar to us I knew would be tough. I need to be patient, continue to unpack, enjoy the quality time with my family and just know that in time we will feel more at home in our new city.