Maybe moving isn't so bad

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Note: I originally wrote this on 9/24 and just now finished it.

Today commenced our life on Springland Lane. I have a short novel to write about all the emotions the last two weeks have held. My emotions have run the gamut from relief to rage. When they say the top three stressful life circumstances are: death, divorce and moving, I wholeheartedly agree. This was the eighth time I put in a change of address card with the post office. You'd think by now that the act of relocating would be a "piece of cake." But this last house was a five year stint that I had hoped would have been twenty. When we were handed the keys to this beautiful home, I told Trey, "when I leave this house it will be feet first". Well I was obviously upright on Monday morning when the movers arrived. The best laid plans, huh?

Over the weekend, as we filled truckloads, packed boxes and became on a first name basis with the Goodwill employees, I grew increasingly disgusted and exhausted with the amount of stuff we had accumulated. I realized that 90% of my time had been spent taking care of all this stuff. Buying it, cleaning it and insuring it. I kept repeating to myself--and God--"this isn't the life I want to live!" How did we let this happen? And yet "letting it happen" was what precipitated this move in the first place. Acquiring material items and not being willing to alter our lifestyle to match our income was what got us here.

These current economic times have not been kind to us over the past two years. It became increasingly difficult to make ends meet and it was taking a toll on our family life. The biggest culprit was the mortgage payment. As our income continued decreasing, that monthly obligation became almost impossible to meet. At the beginning of this year we took a long, hard look at our reality and decided selling was our only option.

We closed in August but agreed on renting back until October 1st. We looked on Craigslist regularly and there were a few options but we just kept saying, "it just doesn't seem like we've seen the house yet." As the weeks marched on, and a rental seemed elusive, I started to panic. Would the kids need to change schools? Would we need to find another home for Millie? First month's, last month's, a damage deposit and a new washer and dryer would set us back a small fortune. And on and on the worries piled up in my mind.

As usual, God came through in ways that seemed impossible. I never tire of telling the story of how he met our needs and loved on our family with small details that were larger than life to us.
On September 8th, we found "the house". It was in the same school boundaries, had a washer and dryer and actually preferred dogs over cats. I knew the minute I saw the photos that this was "it". I came by to check it out well before our appointment with the owner. As I was walking around the yard, she happened to drive up to check out the results of the cleaning company she had hired to spruce up the inside. She took me in and it was perfect. This was how our conversation went:

Me: I think this will work great for our family.
Landlord: Here's the key, you can bring your family back later and let me know.

Me: Do you want me to fill out an application?
Landlord: I don't need an application. This is a small town. If you want to be that kind of person and make your nest here, everyone will hear about it.

Me: I have a dog. She's really sweet and doesn't chew or destroy anything.
Landlord: I don't mind dogs. If she's going to ruin anything, it will be your stuff before it will be mine.

Me: Do you want a full month's rent for a damage deposit?
Landlord: I don't need that much. Let me check and see what I did for the previous tenants and I'll let you know.

I kept thinking, "is this lady for real?" We brought the kids back that night and it was unanimous. We worked out the details of the lease early the next week but she let us start moving boxes in immediately. She had told me earlier that she always brings dinner on the first night a new tenant moves in. She went above and beyond. This was what showed up on our table after an exhausting moving day:
  • Chicken with chantrelle mushrooms
  • Basmati rice
  • Grilled tomatoes and asparagus with a balsamic reduction
  • A fresh bone for Millie from the butcher
  • A Starbucks card for Trey
  • Chocolate truffles and a bottle of wine for me
  • Gift certificates to the batting cages for the boys
  • A beautiful bouquet of fresh cut flowers in a vase
I am not exaggerating one bit. One of my friend's said, "this sounds too good to be true."

As much as selling our home, moving in to a rental and downsizing was not my first choice, I can clearly see it was God's. Aren't miracles all about being too good to be true??


3 Responses to “Maybe moving isn't so bad”

four little acorns said...

I love this post, I love your story, I love your family. Thank you for sharing the end of this chapter with us! (or is it the beginning?) It was so great seeing you last week and catching up a bit. Let's do another coffee date soon :)

dahlberg6 said...

A hard/beautiful story. Thank you for sharing. I was moved by your open-ness. It was good to see you Friday, looking forward to another visit! Bless you. Bless you and your family!

Anonymous said...

Wow! I know that you never lost faith that all would work out Dana - looks like that faith paid off ten-fold. What an amazing landlord - one of God's many angels I am sure.
We can't wait to come see you in your new place, let's figure out something that will work!
Love you Dana!