I've been wanting to sit down and write this for a long time, but I hadn't really gathered my thoughts about it. But I think now that I've seen how things have unfolded up until this point, I can better explain I think. So here goes.....
The one thing about this whole experience is that it has been chock full of blessings and miracles! And another one came through just last night! You see, ever since I lost my job as a teacher (right after giving birth to our first baby), God has been there, providing and strengthening our faith every step of the way. I knew very early on in my pregnancy that God wanted me to stay home with my baby. I didn't know how, because EVERYONE was against me giving up a good job like that. But I just kept praying and believing until finally I conceded to the fact that I was just going to have to do the practical thing and go back to work in the Fall. Well, God had other plans, because I lost my job due to cut backs. I tried very hard to get another job, and never found one. Long story short, I was able to receive unemployment benefits for about 9 months which enabled us to continue to pay the bills and be just fine.
Well, after the unemployment benefits ran out, we were yet again faced with that, "Uh-oh, what do we do now?" feeling! I turned to the Lord and had massive amounts of faith that everything would be ok...although bills were starting to pile up and things were looking a little desperate. My husband, who is the worrier of the family wasn't so optimistic. But over the course of the year, he had been putting out resumes in the hopes of getting a higher paying job (although the one he had was wonderful and a blessing) to better support his family. A whole year went by, and he never even got so much as a, "Thanks for your interest, but...." so we had pretty much given up on that avenue. But then, out of the clear blue sky, he got a call to interview for a General Manager (he's in the hotel business) position in Lexington, KY. He was nervous and excited, and took the initial phone interview, which he sailed through. In that first interview, salary was discussed of course. He told him what he required, and the interviewer just flat out told him that he probably wouldn't get that number because he didn't have a degree, and although he had assistant GM experience, he had never been a GM before, so he'd have to start off with a base salary. But he just said, that he wouldn't take any less than that if he was going to have to pick up and move his family to a different state, and left it at that.
So over the course of a week, he had a face to face interview with a regional supervisor, an interview with the VP of the company and another phone interview. And then, nothing. We waited for over a week to hear if he got it. In the meantime, I had decided that I was going to keep children in my home, like so many of my SAHM friends do. So, I put an add on Craigslist, and got a lot of feedback. My husband and I worked very hard on cleaning and organizing the house to get it ready to show parents (which would prove beneficial for a completely different reason later on). I scheduled interviews and had accepted 2 children (all I needed). We were set. Then, the very next day, DH got the call that he had gotten the job for the full salary that he asked for!!! We were so excited! Well, he was a little more nervous than excited, but proud of himself. I just knew this was God...yet again, stepping in at just the right time and taking care of everything! I was so upset that I had to tell those parents that I couldn't keep their children. But so often, we think God's not workin' fast enough for us, so we try to make something happen ourselves. So, I called them and told them and they were all very understanding and happy for us.
So I quickly decided to call our realtor to get the ball rolling on putting the house on the market. We were really nervous because of all the reports that in this economy, banks weren't giving out loans as freely and that it was not a sellers market! The realtor came through and loved the house (remember we had already gotten it all cleaned up and ready to show the week before!). I told her that we stood to make quite a bit of money on the house no matter what we sold it for, so we didn't want to be greedy, we wanted to price it to sell. She suggested a price that fit well with what houses were going for in our neighborhood and we put it on the market. There were house showings everyday! Why? Because people are trying to get in on that $8,000 first-time home buyer tax credit fromt he stimulus plan! And folks, we sold our house in 10 days for full price! And the buyers aren't even asking for a lot of repairs. We can basically just move and be done with it! So amazing!
Well, while I was working on trying to get all that taken care of, my husband was trying to figure out what he was going to do about his living arrangements in Lexington. That city is 2 1/2 hours away from Knoxville, so there was no way he could commute. And he didn't want to overstep his bounds at a new job and ask for too much too soon by asking if he could just stay at the hotel. He was very worried about it. But just a few days before he was set to start, his supervisor called and said that she was surprised that HR hadn't told him, but he was allowed 30 days to stay at the hotel for free until he got his housing situation squared away! And just last night (30 days later), she called again and my husband explained that we wouldn't be closing on the houses until Oct. 30th, and she said that she understood and that he'd been working so hard that he didn't have time to find housing, so he could just stay another 30 days for free! Praise the Lord!
Ya'll those are the big things, but even the seemingly little things that God has done for us along the way have been incredible. Of course when you're between jobs, money is tight, and our case is no exception. My husband was panicking about even having enough money for gas to drive there and start the job! But right before he was set to leave, he found a $50 bonus check stuck back in a drawer that he had forgotten about, which took care of the gas and then some. Also, the first week he started, he had to drive another 3 hours to Ohio for some trainings. He again was worried about the gas up there and food. But what happened? God took care of it again! He was issued a Purchasing Card for the trip and didn't have to pay for a thing! This whole transition has just been one blessing after another! And I'm so thankful.
We moved to Knoxville on our own when were just newly married babies, almost 13 years ago. We love it here, and will miss our friends, our church, the families we've grown to love and everything about this beautiful part of the world. But I know that this is a new phase for us. I don't know what new and exciting things God has planned for us, but I know He wouldn't have made the way so straight and practically handed us this promotion, and this new life in another city on a silver platter for no reason. Right now, I'm just grateful that He's made a way for this mother to be able to stay at home with her child a little while longer. But in the back of mind, I'm wondering what other amazing things He has in store for us?!
Yes, this transition is hard on us. DH is living alone in a hotel room in a new city. And since he lives there, he just figures he may as well work since he has nothing better to do. So, he's been working 12-16 hour days and is tired and cranky. And I'm here at our house all day and night with a baby...lonely and bored. I have to keep the house immaculate because our realtor continues to show it, just in case the offer falls through. And I don't even know where to begin packing! It's a lot to take sometimes. But I do see a light at the end of this long tunnel and it's just 30 days away! The new home we put an offer on is very comparable to the one we have now except that it has a fireplace, a beautiful sun room, a large pool, a brick patio, a fenced in vegetable garden, privacy fencing, oh and did I mention a HOT TUB! WooHoo! I've always wanted one! It's going to be so fun making this new home that has been very well cared for and maintained, our own, and enjoying it!
So today, on Thankful Thursday, my heart is just so full. I'm thankful for too many things to even begin to name them all!
What are you thankful for today?