Her eyes filled with tears last night, as she spoke about leaving the home where they raised their family.  So many memories and special traditions and rituals happened in the space, and she was processing the grief of it all.

She knew the changes that she and her husband were embracing were good, and she was excited about them, but she also was keenly in touch with her impending loss.


Grief is a natural part of the process of leaving any home.  No matter what the reasons for a change of address, there is a letting go of what is familiar and known, and a stepping out into a new and uncharted course.

We need to give ourselves permission to grieve these losses.  They are real.  It is part of adapting to something new.  It implies a letting go - a releasing of something old and taking a huge step of faith.  So don't ignore the feelings.  Embrace them.


In the scenario I am describing, Mom and Dad are selling their big family home and electing to move from the suburbs into the city.  Their children are launching, and they no longer need the big space.

But this kind of loss and radical change will be felt by the entire family. Their story is a common one. It's helpful to process the change together.  Walk from room to room if that is what feels right, and talk about the special memories and moments that you will cherish.  Weep together if that's what happens, and don't be ashamed.  

Doing a walk through together before leaving a beloved family home will allow for each family member to verbally recount what is precious, and in so doing, will write a chapter in the family history that will be honored and treasured in the years to come.


In due time, it will feel right to celebrate your new residence.  Processing the sadness and loss of leaving in a healthy way will enable the entire family to move toward celebration of a new story line.

And there will be a wonderful new story line.  With time, you will settle into your new place and establish different routines.  You will soon discover delightful new restaurants to enjoy, parks to explore, and neighbors who may be on a similar journey.

Downsizing will surprise you with opportunities for a richer life you didn't know was possible. The freedom and flexibility of living with less will enable you to create a life that focuses on that which is of greatest value.


If you're ready to embark on your own journey, I'd be happy to chat with you. Feel free to contact me here.

Do you have a similar story? Post a comment and share some of your journey.