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Say No To the Stress When Moving Cross-Country

Say No To the Stress When Moving Cross-Country

By Amalah

Dear Amalah –

I need your help here. My husband and I are moving cross-country next week for his new job. The whole thing has been a relatively quick deal (think, about 4 weeks total). We also have a 16 month old daughter and a sweet doggy. Due to bad planning (but not really, because we didn’t know the start date of his job!), my best friend from college has her bachelorette party the following weekend, in Austin, and since I am the maid of honor (and only bridesmaid for that fact), I should most definitely be there.

But, I am just so stressed. I have to fly solo with my daughter, since our dog can’t fly to the west coast with us (he’s part pit), so my husband has to drive the 2500 miles with him. On the other side of our move, we are living with in-laws, which while so well-intentioned and loving, my daughter is in full on stranger danger mode and she’s only met her grandparents about 3 times. And then I have to fly out again? I know my husband will be there by that time, but he’s going to be working long hours since he is starting a new job. AND THEN! The week after the party, I have to fly back to the Midwest for my work, and I’ll be gone a whole week.

I am just coming apart. I am stressed about the cross country move, I am stressed about a 4.5 hour plane trip alone with a 16 month old who is cutting molars, I am stressed about leaving the poor girl in a strange house, with (somewhat) strange people, nothing familiar around her at all, twice, TWICE in the weeks following. I am stress, that as a Maid of Honor I have to be at the bachelorette party (and stressed, that because I hadn’t been able to buy tickets yet and I just looked and they are $700!) And I am stressed that on top of all this, I still need to continue working diligently (yet remotely) at my current job, proving to my boss that I can work effectively from a remote location (so – no stress there – my job just depends on it!)

What can I do to make this easier or, you know, just sleep at night? How absolutely terrible of a person am I if I can’t make the bachelorette? Can I just fly out a different weekend to see my friend? Fly out early for the wedding to see how I could help? Just lay my story at her feet and beg forgiveness (she would totally tell me it’s not a big deal. But, it is pretty terrible to cancel last minute on the bride). Can I just go hide in a hole somewhere until this next month is over??

Help!
Maid of Stress, not Honor

AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

I repeat: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

I’m getting a secondhand anxiety attack just reading about your life right now; I cannot even imagine what it’s like to be actually living it.

So, for starters, you are 100% not going to that bachelorette party. I mean. No. You can’t! Girl! That’s crazy! I could see stressing out about canceling if we were talking about the actual wedding but the bachelorette party? For your best friend from college? That you have to fly to? No. No with the force of a million suns!

I admittedly have BEYOND zero tolerance for wedding-related drama or even bridezilla-lite behavior, but you are so not a terrible person for canceling. I mean, the fact that you’re still even considering shelling out $700 in plane tickets in the midst of a cross-country move WITH A BABY tells me that you are not a terrible person. You are a conscientious and very kind person who (JUST GUESSIN’ HERE) routinely puts the needs and desires of other people above your own, even to the point of a damn mental breakdown.

Here’s what you’re going to do. You’re going to break the news to your friend. You of course will be apologetic but firm in your resolve — a whirlwind, last-minute, cross-country move (that obviously, wasn’t even on your radar when you accepted the role of maid of honor) has thrown a massive, unyielding wrench in the works and you won’t be able to fly out to the bachelorette party. BUT! You will be there for the wedding and you can even arrive early to be of extra help. (Although please only say that if that’s actually true, and not just something that will cause you undue amounts of hardship and stress later down the line!!!) Your friend — as you admit yourself — will say it’s fine. She may be disappointed but she will survive, and she will most likely understand completely, given everything you’ve laid out here.

(If she DOESN’T understand completely or gets upset or guilt-trips you or starts muttering about replacing you as MOH…well, that’s everything you need to know about your “best friend from college” and why she never graduated to “best friend from all of life, period.”)

The weekend of the party, you’re going to call the hotel or hostess or whatever and arrange for a nice bottle of champagne or snacks or flowers to be there when the bride arrives with a nice note from you.

And then you can let this particular stressor go and focus on the 5,294,208 other things you’ve got going on in your life.

Photo source: Unsplash/TimGoedhart

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Amalah
About the Author

Amy Corbett Storch

Amalah

Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Ama...

Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it’s pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to [email protected].

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.

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Comments

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Jennifer
Guest
Jennifer

I disagree. Just do it. You will be fine. Your daughter will be fine. As you said, your husband will be there and guaranteed, 5 minutes after you leave, your kiddo will be so enamored with Grandma and Grandpa, she won’t even miss you. Think of it as a practice run for your longer trip. Sounds like a weekend of fun may do you a world of good too. Escape from the stress for a bit.

Caroline Bowman
Guest
Caroline Bowman

Completely, if the bride is a good friend, and it sounds like she is a great person, she would be mortified to think of you in such a state over what is in fact a party. That is what we’re talking about here. Her other friends can organise something OR she may be delighted not to have one and get out of it with joy! Of course you need to have a proper conversation with her about it, ideally face time or as ”close” to in-person as is feasible, to show you take it seriously and aren’t just ditching her… Read more »

janine repka
Guest
janine repka

i def co-sign sending champagne/snacks to the room. if they’re staying at an airbnb or other non-hotel accommodation you can achieve the same feel by using seamless or insomnia cookies or even a local bakery or liquor store.

Guest
Guest
Guest

So I’ve got some experience with cross country moves on short notice – I’m an Army wife and our last 2 moves happened with less than 2 months notice. Our last move was over 2,000 miles with a dog and a 17 month old toddler…and did I mention I am pregnant with our second baby? I was 24 weeks along at the time of the move. And my husband had to leave 2 weeks after we arrived because that’s how things roll sometimes in the Army, so I was on my own in a new house in a new state… Read more »

kr
Guest
kr

Man, I’m stressed out on your behalf right now. That all sounds SO HARD. So maybe other commenters are right that, once you get to that time, future you could go and actually be fine. BUT, present-day you is under SERIOUS stress right now, and deserves to take any possible steps to reduce that stress. I think when you get stressed to the point of describing yourself as “coming apart” (and yeah, I have no doubt I’d be at that point too if I were in your shoes!) you should feel no guilt about shifting into survival mode, where you… Read more »

Claire
Guest
Claire

If you can swing it, could the bachelorette ticket money be spent on having someone fly out with you? If, say, your mother were to come (or friend, whoever wants a free west coast ticket, knows your daughter well and us cool under pressure!), would that free you up a bit to settle into a new routine? Also, start face timing the grandparents as much as you can in the coming weeks until you move- my mother in law did this before a trip to see them, and would say “look at this yummy snack I bought! We have a… Read more »