A new chapter. A fresh start. A change of scenery. A getting out of the boat moment. It was all of those, I suppose, mixed in with a new challenge and the hope of new friends to meet and new experiences to be had.
We summed it up by calling it “Our A-venture.” (The four-year old may have had something to do with that.)
It all started with an undeniable urge to sell my house. For about a month, most of the conversations went like this:
Any given friend: You’re going to sell your house and you have no idea what you’re going to do?
I had no idea where I was going to go or really, what I was going to do. I knocked on many doors and the only answer I kept coming to was: sell your house.
So I did.
“If you don’t get any showings within two weeks, we’ll need to talk about the price,” my realtor said as he pounded the For Sale sign in my yard.
48 hours, 16 showings and 3 offers later, I had a signed contract.
I got up to go to bed and fell to my knees, almost as if reality itself knocked me down. I had just sold my house out from under me with no earthly idea of what I was going to do next.
Through sobbing tears, “God,” I prayed. “I have no idea what I’ve just done. I know that I know that I know that I was supposed to do that. I don’t need to know the plan, but can you at least show me the next step?”
I had 8 weeks until closing. For the next two, I had no answer. No direction. No plan. And complete peace.
I have no idea how. Well, I do know how, but it was weird having peace like that through such uncertainty. I was assuring my concerned friends that it was going to be okay. And then at night, in the quiet, I’d wonder if it really was going to be okay. But I slept. I prayed. I kept on with what needed to get done.
And then, two weeks later, I got a call from a company asking if I’d fly in for an interview. I flew in on a Thursday, interviewed Friday and was offered the job on Saturday. I accepted on Monday and resigned the same day.
When it’s right, it’s right. When it’s meant to be, there is no uncertainty. Will it be perfect? No. Easy? Not necessarily. But worth it? For sure.
A month later, after many good-byes, with my four-year old passenger tucked between Dora books, a LeapPad and plenty of snacks in the backseat, we left “home,” for a new one. We left what had become familiar for the unknown. We left life as we knew it for life as we could only imagine.
From airplanes to airports, selling items and buying them, the east coast to the west and a few international experiences in between, I’ve been fortunate to meet some pretty amazing people through some pretty random circumstances. And I wouldn’t change my wildly diverse bouquet of friends and people in the ring with me for the world.
So, when 19 hours between destinations meant stops in four cities, it was a perfect opportunity to see some of those friends along the way. I’m too familiar with the funny way God works to call it a coincidence that there were dear friends mapped out at just the locations we needed to stop each night.
We experienced kindness and hospitality like I’ve never quite experienced before. Vanilla lattes at the Soule Café, Wet and Wild Waterpark fun. Homemade breakfast and a car inspection before heading across Tennessee. Sight-seeing in St. Louis. And the best Midwest welcome, complete with a bonfire and roasted marshmallows to welcome us “home.”
There was coffee-making and wine-drinking. There was laughter and tears. There were hugs. Lots and lots of really good hugs. There were late-nights of catching up and early mornings.
And there were texts and phone calls and emails of encouragement and support.
Kindness, simple kindness, can just make a heart explode with gratitude. And friends, real, there-for-ya, friends, are not only the best, but necessary and needed to get through this life.
And so, “Our A-venture” begins…or maybe, it just continues.
Because after 19 hours of driving, I realized, our lives are meant to be adventures, I think. When we stop limiting ourselves merely because of a fear of failing. When we stop choosing fear disguised as practicality. When we are open to risk and discovery. When we try. When we take one brave step, that’s where life is lived, at least for me anyway.
Safe seems comfortable, I get it. But rather than asking what happens if I try? What about asking what happens if I don’t?
Here’s to taking one brave step with knees knocking. Here’s to the A-venture!