Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Take What Comes, and Live without Complaint...

It looks like we're going to be moving in with my parents this fall.
I don't know if I can express how truly depressing it is to have to leave it behind. I haven't really lived with my parents since I graduated from high school. Sure, I spent summers there while in college, but it was 3 months at a time. 
We are being squashed by our finances, mostly the result of irresponsible choices early in our relationship and an unexpected pregnancy, early in our marriage and prior to the end of my husband's education... and our decision to push our luck in an attempt to let me be a stay-at-home-mom for the first seven months. The reality is, we took a lot of gambles, and most of them have been a loss. 
Jeremy didn't finish his PhD (although he did manage to turn it into a second Master's). We moved to a town that I hated. I left behind the majority of my emotional support. The first year in this new place sucked. My son didn't start sleeping through the night until he was a year old, and I was the only one getting up with him. Every time I made a new friend, they had to move. Literally.
And then? I started working at Starbucks. And it changed my whole life. I made friends. I talked to real adults-- sorry, Jim Dale. Listening to you read Harry Potter on a constant loop just wasn't good enough. I was promoted. I got a new manager-- the best boss, EVER. I became part of a team, a family. Part of a group of people who were interested in my development, professionally and personally. I am not sure I can count the number of times my boss saw me cry and listened to my woes. She was the first person to hear about my miscarriage, other than my husband, obviously. At one o'clock in the morning. She told me to take whatever time I needed to recover. She and one of the other management team members have been there for me in every trial. They gave me candid advice and constructive criticism. I found purpose, drive, and ambition. This summer makes two years of barista bliss. And while I will be leaving this store, it is definitely my intention to stick with the company as long as humanly possible.
A few weeks ago, a store manager position came available in what I consider to be my "home town." In a moment of desperate, delirious hope, I applied. For a shining moment, I thought I could go home. That I could do something to rectify our financial situation. That I could keep us out of my parents' house. But. I'm honestly just not ready for that position yet, and my district manager and my current store manager both know it.
I have to admit that I am doing a lot of grieving about this situation. I tried to put a cheerful face on it for a while. But the truth is... it's going to suck. A lot. A LOT. It's going to try us. It's going to push my relationships to the edge-- my relationship with my mother, my father, my husband, and my child(ren). I am going to have to learn to be far more honest and vocal than I ever was in the past, living with my parents as a child.
You know what, though?
It is going to grow me. Stretch me.
There are so many more terrible things that could be happening in my life. We are not getting chased out of our house. We have someplace to go. My current pregnancy (22.5 weeks now!) is going strong-- healthy and perfect as can be. My son is healthy. My husband has 8 (eight!) educational endorsements in math and science, and should be able to get a job in Alabama with no trouble. We have friends from Virginia Tech who live 2 hours from my parents. My parents have a house that will allow us a measure of privacy. 
I cannot change what is coming. But I can change the way I face it.
"Take what comes, and live without complaint. What will be, will be. Life is woman's gift; death is God's."


  1. In 2009 I got laid off when I was 14 weeks pregnant and my husband hadn't finished his degree and we ended up moving back in with my parents while we waited for our house to sell. We ended up being there about 15 months. It was better than I would have expected. (My parents were even sad to see us move out.)

    Good luck with all the change coming your way!

  2. I'm inspired by your active choice to embrace what's coming with hope rather than despair. That is not an easy thing to do, but I'm so totally convinced that life is not about what happens to you but about how you react to what happens to you. It's not an easy lesson to learn. We've had a very challenging couple of years as well. Challenging. Frustrating. INFURIATING. As hard as things are for us right now, I realized (just this afternoon, actually) that it's okay. I have this deep, abiding hope within me and I know that everything is going to be okay. Perhaps life doesn't look right now (or ever?) the way I thought it would look, but it's okay. You have your faith and you have your family - you can face anything as long as you've got those two in order. Praying for you, Sheila. xxoo

  3. We left out beloved Texas to return "home" to the Pacific Northwest in July so I could take a job that is a great "resume builder" - but also reduced my salary by 1/3. My hubby got a job teaching up in Seattle, while my job is in Portland. So I am living with my dad & step-mom in Portland, while hubby & son are living in Seattle with my mother-in-law. We see each other between 4 and 12 days a month. It sucks if we only look at the present situation, but we are working for a brighter, more-stable future. And, like you, I am grateful that we have amazing parents who are willing to shelter us when we need them. Hope all is going well for you and your boys, Sheila! :-)