A moving truck is parked next door, and it’s making me sad.
We bought this house back in 2001 when our daughter was just 18-months-old and still carrying around her singing Barney doll. Our next-door-neighbors, Bill and Susie, still had the last of their 5 children – a senior in high school at the time – at home. They had lived in the neighborhood for over two decades at the time, and they welcomed us warmly.
Our home had been a rental for a while, and as we set to work to make it our own, Bill would often come help. There was an old, unsafe treehouse in the back, and as he helped us tear it down, my tiny daughter danced around the yard, singing, “Yay the Bill! Yay the Bill!” Another time, he helped her make handprints in the cement he’d poured around our new mailboxes.
Susie, always thoughtful, would have special Halloween treats for the kids every year when they trick-or-treated. She would have cards for all of us on Easter. At Christmastime, a container of her holiday baking was always welcomed and enjoyed. And Susie is a world-class hugger.
These are people who have watched my house transform from old-and-busted to new hotness. They have seen my huge second pregnancy belly and watched that baby grow into a teenaged boy. They were around when our crazy dog came to live with us and when my marriage fell apart. They have been stability as the other homes in the neighborhood have changed hands. They have been a great source of support as I have begun the journey of single-momhood. They are the kind of neighbors we have been incredibly lucky to have and the kind of friends I wish for everyone.
They are loved, and they will be missed.