This week has been hard. This month has been hard. I never expected to be stuck without a house for over 5 weeks now. I’m loosing track of days quickly, I judge time by who’s house we were at that week, who’s couch I was sleeping on. I find myself getting after the kids more often than truly necessary, I feel stressed out and bored at the same time. I miss my life. This is all some weird side track we’re on and I can’t wait to get back on the main path. If it were just my husband and me it really wouldn’t be so bad, but I feel sorry for the kids. They’ve missed so much school, and spent weeks at a time at other (very wonderful) people’s houses when we couldn’t find a place to stay all together. Honestly, how many people do you know that can take in a family of 6 all at once?? All the time they spent at other homes, I kept thinking This is not what I signed up for. I should be doing that. I hate inconveniencing people. I hate it. When the kids have homework, I want to be there to help them. When the need discipline, I want to be there. That’s what I signed up for, that’s my job, and I actually want to do those things. It was really hard for me to hand over those reigns for a week at a time.
This week we’re all together in a hotel. Um, apparently the state’s cheapest hotel, no lie. It’s close quarters and we’re all feeling it. And although I feel stressed and on edge, I prefer being here than farming out my children to (very wonderful) people. I can’t miss any more of their lives, and even though it is kind of a big deal, I don’t want all this to be a big deal. Really, in the grand scheme of things, 5 weeks is a speed bump. I know they’ll remember not living in the house for a while, but I hope it doesn’t change them…but I already know it has.
These are our trials, as God gives them to us. We all have them, in one way or another every single person we know is going through their own personal trial, whether we can see it or not. The thing that makes you a bigger person is how you handle that trial. 1 Thessalonians 5:17-19 “ Pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” It’s easy for me to thank him when my table if full of food, my house is warm, and I can turn on the faucet any time I like. Prayer is harder these days, but I know its up to us as a family to remember to thank Him for what we continue to have. Friends and family to take us in & to feed us, a vehicle, a roof over our head somewhere, each other (as I am reminded while I listen to four, yes, all four kids snoring louder than the next room’s noisy TV). We are also thankful that the kids seem to be able to make themselves at home no matter where they are (Max, put your clothes back on! Not that at home!) And yes, this experience has changed all of us, but I think it has changed us for the better. Here’s what we’ve learned:
- I was starting to really dislike our house for one reason or another. I’ve come to realize it’s not our house I dislike, its how I’ve been living in that house. I’d sure love to be living in it now.
- We really can make do with less. Living with 5 days’ worth of clothes, minimal toys, and minimal space it has become very obvious we have too much and take it for granted. We’ve already devised a large purging of our house once we get back in.
- Different houses = different rules. Deal with it, but don’t be disrespectful, or you deal with dad.
- Turning up the heat is a luxury we take for granted around here, too. I walked by the thermostat at our cold cold house today and
wantedlonged to reach for it and hear that boiler spark up. Sigh.
- God will not abandon us nor will we abandon Him.
- Living together as a family, even in tight quarters, is better than being spread apart. That being said, we sure will enjoy our own spaces that much more when we have them back.
- I really, really miss our fast and always available internet. I guess that’s not much of a lesson, more of a realization…or addiction? :) I’ve missed you all, in any case!