The last days


When I think of my last days in Colorado, I will think of the temperature – days in the high 90s, the brutal sun beating down on the Mile High City, and me, applying SPF 100 like my life depended on it (which it kind of did). The air conditioner in my Subaru struggled, no longer strong enough to stand up to the heat. On the lucky days in which I made it to the mountains, I experienced Colorado’s iconic summer smell: pine needles in dry dirt.

And then I will think of the rain – the afternoon thunderstorms that you can set the clock by, raging storms that swelled the rivers and flooded my normal walking paths. Of course, this didn’t stop me from walking, although June was a Fitbit feast or famine (35K steps at the highest, 3K at the lowest – a day in which I brought shame to my family).

I will remember moving out of my house, everything in cardboard boxes and plastic bins, stuffed into the largest truck I’ve ever driven – and then the solo cross-country trip in which I got 6 miles to the gallon and took 16 hours to make it 900 miles. I unloaded everything into a storage unit, and flew back to Denver – because I wasn’t finished with Colorado yet.

I will think of Starbucks breakfasts and Chipotle lunches, just because I didn’t have a kitchen anymore.

I will remember my nephew’s faces when we all stayed up way too late playing games that made them laugh uncontrollably. And I will remember rubbing lotion into the 4-year old’s skinny, espresso-colored calves, and him telling me for the tenth time, “I saw a antelope! Outside! I saw it!”

I will think of my final appointment with my beloved and trusted counselor who, when discussing all of the changes I’m going through, reminded me, “Don’t put too much stock in anything you’re thinking or feeling right now,” which made me laugh, because doesn’t she know who I am?! But it secretly felt like permission granted. And when I said, “When I move to Minnesota, no matter what, I just can’t stop hoping,” she shook her finger at me and said in a hushed, urgent voice, “Don’t you dare.”

I will remember the entire year before these last days, a year in which life felt like it was closing in, like I was trapped and constrained, like toothpaste in a tube. And the day I decided to say yes to this opportunity placed in front of me, the day I decided to move to Minnesota, it was like the cap fell off and life squeezed loose.

Today I drive to Minneapolis, for real and for good this time. I’ve sold my house in Denver, and am in the process of buying a new one – but until everything is final, Foxy is staying with my dad in Colorado. Even though it’s temporary, leaving my dog is the hardest thing for me. I anticipate crying all the way to Nebraska.

The days to come are sure to be filled with newness, novelty, and fresh perspective. I am excited, and ready for the change. But as exciting as the first days are, I never want to forget the last days either. Because they’ve been pretty damn rich.




  1. Dani in Maroc on July 3, 2015 at 7:56 AM

    in a few short months we will be moving and saying goodbye to our heart country. And although I know we will return, I don’t know when and I’m not sure how. Thank you for this reminder to remember. To treasure in my heart the days, weeks and months that have come and gone. Remembering, isn’t it such a big part of our faith?! Yet I always forget to do it.

    Adventure is out there Annie. I cannot hardly wait to see what comes next in your life. Such a special blessing to see where God takes you and to read how he’s at work in you. Thank you for the willingness and courage to share. I am continually encouraged.

  2. Greta on July 3, 2015 at 9:12 AM

    I feel like this blog needs a building, beautiful soundtrack behind it.

    Go you!! Godspeed! It’s happening!! I love you!!!

  3. Michael Rhyne on July 3, 2015 at 9:43 AM

    What Greta said…every word.

  4. Perry on July 3, 2015 at 11:26 AM

    Gosh, I’m in tears. So happy for you. My heart just swells with joy, anticipation…this next chapter in the Annie Parsons saga is gonna be a good one. I can feel it.

  5. Peg on July 3, 2015 at 12:19 PM

    Do DARE….to just be you, take it all in, jump into life in a new place as you always seem to do. And – what Greta said :)

  6. Wendy Jans on July 3, 2015 at 12:56 PM

    Seriously woman, you are SUCH a gifted writer!! Please write a book!
    (And safe travels/good luck on your exciting new destination!)

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