Written by Elizabeth Salahuddin

You’re moving. Now what?!

A dream home in the suburbs is calling your name. A job relocation to another coast is tempting you away. You’re ready for a new lifestyle or change in environment. There is a solid chance a move with your family is in the future.

Last summer we moved from our cozy little nook in Chicago across the country to the Ocean State. It was a huge life re-route for my husband (new job), my kids (new school) and me (new everything).

There were a lot of things I got right and there were a lot of things I could have done better. To help you and your family make smoother transitions, I’d like to share some friendly insight, tips, and advice from my own experiences.

* Keep the people close to you (especially your kids) in the loop as much as possible. Even if you’re resisting the change, open communications with your support network are essential for dealing with the upcoming transitions and navigating the new path ahead.

* Find a doctor, dentist, and therapist for everyone in the family as soon as possible. Our son suffered from multiple ear infections in the first month we arrived in Providence. Ask around, tour, and interview multiple physicians. I had great luck in asking the teachers at our new school for referrals.

* Regarding school admissions, if anyone tells you that you’ve missed a registration deadline, there are no spots for your child or calls and return emails are not happening as frequently as you’d like – don’t listen and don’t give up! Get to the highest level admissions person possible. Call every day, multiple times. Send emails to everyone on the school board. Stalk parks, cafes and shops around the school, chatting up friendly faces. Persistence pays off big time.

* Sign up the kids and yourself for at least one activity, sport, club, or class to ease the transition and stay busy. This is also a great way to meet people in your new ‘hood.

* Look for a “new to the area” neighbors or friends group. Most communities have some sort of established network of newbies for play dates, social gatherings, sports or family outings.

* Lastly, whether you’re on board with the move or not so much (as was my case), it’s going to be okay. Maybe not right away, but you will be in time. There are great people out there to help and guide you along the way. Let them in. You never know what life has in store for you and it’s a great thing to be open to the possibilities.

I’m happy to report that six plus months after our move, we’re adjusting as best we can to our new digs here in Rhode Island, meeting great people and realizing that we love all things seafood! If you’re ever out this way, please look us up!

–Elizabeth Salahuddin
formerly of Logan Square, Chicago, IL and the East Side of Providence, RI
now residing in quaint but quiet Barrington, RI