We are moving. Before the summer is over, our plan is to move about 20 miles north, out of the suburbs and into the heart of the thriving and revived Oklahoma City. We are packing up our home of 7 years, the home I never saw us leaving and pictured future grandchildren visiting. If you had asked me a year ago, I would have said, “Of course we are moving. It’s only a matter of time.”
But a lot can change in a year.
A year ago, our church had just bought our building in the heart of midtown. That was the answer to an impossible prayer. I was on staff, so I was actively involved in many details and spent many hours at the church getting it ready. My family helped vacuum, place and straighten chairs, clean, organize nursery toys, and my husband helped design and implement most of the landscaping surrounding the building. We were driving a lot to be involved, and moving closer to the church made perfect sense. We were both on board.
And then my husband’s business ended unexpectedly. It was devastating, to be sure, but we saw it as God’s timing to move us closer to my husband’s dream of living, working, and church-ing in the same city. He started to look for ways to start his business over again in OKC. We quickly realized, however, that wasn’t going to happen any time soon and in the meantime, we needed to survive.
So he took a job that required him to drive well over an hour to the southwest part of our state. Now he was living in one city, churching in another, and working in and serving a community that he had no ties to whatsoever. He was confused and hurt.
There were good things about his new job. Yes, his commute was long and he spent more hours of the day driving (he was doing home health) than he did practicing physical therapy, but the pay was great. He had a job that was providing. For me, the positives far outweighed the negatives. While his stress and frustrations mounted, mine were eased by the security of knowing our bills were paid and our fridge was stocked.
So I was surprised when, about a month into his new job he said to me, “I understand that your stress and fear has lessened with this new job. I would also never compare what I’m feeling now to what you feel having lost your mom, but I need you to understand that I’m grieving here, and I feel like I’m doing it all alone.”
And so we became two wounded people doing life together. We entered into the sadness and the hurt and the confusion. Sometimes we were together and sometimes we were two lonely people just trying to survive each day.