Monday, January 11, 2016

UT to VA: Expectation vs Reality

After 2000 miles, 3 packs of jerky, 35 hours of driving and 4 McDonald stops, we made it to our final destination. The drive actually wasn't that bad! The worst weather we hit was in Texas, of all places. We made some fun stops along the way as we got further east, once in Memphis to see the Pink Palace (which is actually a dinosaur museum, who woulda thought:), and then again in Nashville to see the Parthenon and Jack White's Third Man Records store, because Tayler is a BIG fan of that guy.
Three Man Records

On our fourth day of traveling, we arrived! You know how you can be aware of something thats going to happen but it doesn’t really hit you until you're actually there? And then you’re like, wait what. Did I really think this through?

 That uncertainty was exactly how I was feeling as we rolled into town in our tired little Fiat. Like, WE ARE SO FAR FROM HOME WHAT ARE WE DOING HERE UTAH IS SO MUCH PRETTIER WHERE ARE MY MOUNTAINS TAKE ME BACK TAKE ME BACK MOOOOOMMMMMM…..

You know, the usual panic.

I tried to keep my cool and remember that it was an adventure with my husband, that I still had him, and that everything would be ok. I thought that when we got to our rental and started moving our stuff in and making it our home, I’d feel much better.

But rolling up to the curb of our home-to-be wasn’t what we expected. The brick home was cute enough, but the lawn was overgrown and the roof appeared to be sagging. Once we stepped inside it just got worse. Floorboards were missing, the ceiling was cracked, and there was one large, nasty water circle in the ceiling. The wall below it was warped and waved from the water damage. To top it off, the home had been winterized and it would take at least a week to get all the water, gas, and electric on. And this was the home that we were suppose to move into that very day. Thanks online pictures, for your spot on accuracy. I can sympathize with Tinder users now. 

Needless to say, that house wasn't gonna happen. If we had Chip and Jojo at our side, maybe, but in our current state of exhaustion we just wanted a place we could move into. As soon as possible.

And then the second panic wave came. The Oh Bother We Are Homeless panic. I didn't want to be the weepy wife, but the worry that I felt was quickly threatening to come out as big ugly tears. 

For the first few hours we drove around town, Tayler looking for rental signs while I searched for ads online, and then we began asking locals if they knew of available places. When nothing was open, I tried to keep my calm about it. Tayler and I nervously joked about possible places we could make our home (i.e. the tunnel under the bridge, an abandoned shed, etc.)

But as night began to fall and we’d been searching the whole day without progress, I just crumpled. Worry, fear, anger. Tears that I couldn’t control started streaming down my face.

And then Tayler asked me what was wrong. Oh husbands. They are cute but sometimes.... 

I didn’t think that his question warranted an answer, just because I thought it was pretty obvious what I was upset about? Haha later he admitted that maybe that wasn't the smartest question to ask:)

We had done everything we could with nothing to show for it, and I was emotionally spent.  As we sat in our car we decided to say a prayer, something we should’ve thought of much earlier. Better late than never right? Because moments later a lady whom we’d called texted saying that her renters fell through and she had a place available at once.

The relief we felt was instant. Just a subtle reminder that our Father in Heaven is waiting to bless us, but we have to humble ourselves and ask for His help.

 I wish I could say that was the end of our woes, but personally I think it’s gonna take some time for me to get used to this tiny town. It's small, it's old, it's remote. Every person we talked with before we left used the word “adventure” to describe our move, but right now it doesn’t feel like an adventure. It just feels like change. Like a big ol' slap in the face welcome to a place where you’re a stranger change; the kind of change that hurts and makes you want your home and your family.

I know that big changes like this always take time to get used to, and Tayler has been very supportive of me and my fluctuating emotions:) My sweet friend Kaitlyn also gave me some helpful advice when I announced we were going to move to Virginia, and I loved it so much I wanted to share it.

"Moving out of the state you know and love is a bit frightening..but so rewarding! :) You’ll find things that you never knew would make you happy, the sunsets will be pleasantly different, the people will be different, smiles will become something even more welcoming, and you’ll find more hobbies and interests and get to explore a whole new world! Have SO MUCH FUN.”

I love her optimistic perspective, that where ever you are you will find things to love.

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