What a whirlwind. Tomorrow we get to see the Meadow Lane Manor! (Yes, our house has a name. How do you name a house? I don’t know, but we found it somewhere on the internet… Yes, please!)

Earlier this week, every person in our household (minus Lois) got bombarded by the Norovirus (aka stomach bug) and was completely incapable of doing anything significant. It was not a pretty sight around here.

And yet, despite puking and the like, I experienced many small, tender mercies of God throughout and recovered with greater gratitude toward a God who cares so intimately for his children. It was a trial definitely worth living, even though it made us all a little “behind” on life.

And now: enter scramble mode. After regaining strength and the ability to keep food down, I started frantically hustling around my in-law’s house packing everything in sight. We are trying to pack ALL of our belongings and live out of suitcases for the next week. It is definitely not as much work, had we been moving our entire house, but there is still enough to do, and not much time to do it.

This time around, packing feels a bit different. It’s not as emotional, because it’s not our house. Thus, there aren’t as many intimate memories built into the boards and floors. However, as I see empty shelves, cabinets, and closets, these empty slots symbolize the next step closer to leaving parents, family, and friends. We aren’t leaving a house we love this time, we are leaving people we love. Yikes.

But even still, we aren’t MOVING-moving yet. We are just transferring our belongings and coming back. So I’m not yet sappy with leaving people. It’s just kinda there in the background of my mind, and my excitement is distracting my emotions. I’m not sure if I’m avoiding it, or if I’m just too excited to finally get on with life!

I have always said, “It is easier to leave than to be left.” If your spouse goes on a work trip, they don’t seem to miss you, as much as you miss them. If a family leaves your church, they don’t seem to miss the church, as much as the church misses them. Why? Because when you are the one gone, you have a whole new everything to deal with. The adventure, newness, and purpose is driving you forward and there aren’t so many things to remind you of back home. But, when someone leaves you, everything is the same EXCEPT that person. It’s miserable, and every corner you look at you are reminded of them and their absence. The loss is felt, the memories mock, and the hole obvious.

Now to be fair, I haven’t been the one who has left very often. Most of the time I am the one left. So this is a new angle of life I’m experiencing. Maybe I will find out that leaving is harder than staying. But I will say that I have had military friend, after military friend, leave me. And every time, in the closeness of their departure, I have asked them how they felt. Almost every single one of them has said they are “ready” and “excited.” I always thought they should be “sad” and “sappy” instead, because that’s how I was feeling toward their re-location away from me! But now, I get it. I think we are ready and excited! The sad and sappy will come, yes, but boy am I ready!

“Ready” mentally, but not ready physically, I must add. There’s still much to do before 2:00pm when we load my mom’s car, plus we are going to the zoo this morning, and I don’t know when I’m going to pack the rest of our junk. Ha…. I should probably get going…

It has been a restful 3 months living with Bob and Kathy. It hasn’t gone as we expected (they are probably laughing at the understatement of that phrase), but none-the-less it has been restorative, inspirational, reflective, and restful.

And now… we move!!!!

Ah! I know this is probably naive of me to say, but I am so excited to simply do our dishes in our very own sink again! I’m excited to clean our very own dirt on our very own floors. I’m excited to hang pictures, hang clothes, and hang keys on new hooks and rods. I’m eager to lay my eyes on our little abode we will spend so much time in. I just can’t keep it in! I’m sorry family and friends, but the adventure awaits us, and the thrill of it all is making me happy, not sappy.

Bobby said his counselor would always ask him, “And, is that a bad thing?” Basically, Bobby would express a feeling or thought with the assumption that it was wrong, in which his counselor would respond with questioning the assumption. Growing up, people always tell you what you should do and how you should feel. Well I take that back, it’s not just growing up. People are always telling you what you should do and how you should feel. Read any blog, article, or book. People’s opinions on how you should run and rule your life are rampant! Anyway, somewhere and somehow I got the impression that we ought to be sad and sappy (which we are at times!). So I am feeling a little guilty that I’m ready and excited…

Maybe it’s the fact that we are really truly CHOOSING to go. We aren’t being forced by a job loss, financial dip, or family catastrophe. Bobby simply wanted to go to seminary, I was game to “tag along,” and so here we are. Off to go chase our dreams!

Like I said, leaving is always easier. We are choosing it. We are ready for it. There is something about the free-will nature of our departure that charges us forward.

What do you want to bet, the next blog post I write will be sappy, sad, and fill my keyboard with emotional tears? Ha. I guess I’m predicting I will be talking out of two sides of my mouth. But hey, my feelings can change— right? I am entitled to be happy one day and sad the next… as do we all.

Well, I really do have things to pack, like shoes, clothes, and sack lunches… So… over and out.

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