In three weeks life as I know it is going to drastically change. I don’t think that fact has actually hit me since the Lord made it clear that I should move – well not quite like it has this weekend.
There’s just something about packing up everything you own (deciding what to keep and what to give away) that makes one nostalgic and realize the magnitude of what’s about to happen.
Up to this point I haven’t expressed too many emotions about moving and actually have felt very neutral about it. Some of my friends and I have joked about my being an emotionless person because my typical answer to “how are you doing with the move?” has been unemotional and task oriented. That doesn’t mean I’m not excited for the new journey ahead, or that I’m not sad to no longer see people I love here as often as I do now. But today I had a moment where my neutral territory was invaded on both sides and the reality of emotions collided with one another.
I’m sure it was a combination of things that provoked my afternoon meeting with emotions. There was the encouraging comments made by one of my pastors to the church body about our move and how much Emilie and I need prayer and support during this time – thanks, Doug! Then there was the kind and very unexpected financial gesture from our church’s welcome team to me personally. Not to mention the inspiring conversation I had with a friend after church about praying through the possibilities in life and bringing all of my dreams before the Lord so that He directs the clear path and fills it with the ideas and desires that He has for me during this transition and beyond.
To top it all off, Emilie and I had an awesome Skype date with our new roommate Mandi this afternoon. She’s been doing the leg work for all of us in DC and visiting potential houses in preparation for our July relocation. It felt like the beginning of some great times in our new home (as we were all together on that call) and I ended the call with a huge smile on my face, excited for what the Lord has in store as we continue to search for the place He would have us live.
All of that brings me to this moment. I started this blog post with the intention of providing an update about our preparation and steps toward DC, and yet that’s not what has happened. As soon as I started typing I started crying and then started laughing – oh and then more crying ensued and the moment ended with laughter.
What’s hilarious to me is that it’s just God and I in this house right now. I’m sitting on my bed in Indian style with my computer on my lap, surrounded by the remnants of packing, and all of sudden tears are rolling down my face and then I’m laughing – out loud. I’m laughing right now as I type this because it’s such a testimony to how the Lord works in this complex heart of mine.
One moment I’m coasting along in neutral land and then BAM I’m swimming in a sea of tears, somehow not drowning because my laughter life jacket comes to the rescue.
Why did I cry? I allowed myself to consider what life will look like when I won’t see my SCV church family every Sunday, or when I won’t take a random trip to Disneyland with my close girlfriends, or when I can’t hop in my car and drive 7 minutes on a Monday morning to see my beloved friends at the office, or what it will be like when I’m no longer living within driving distance of some of my closest and dearest friends. There is history in these last six years and thats what I shed tears for today.
But then I laughed remembering all of the great times I’ve had here and (if I’m being vulnerable) because I like to think of myself as not overly sentimental, yet my tears were overflowing with sentiment and appreciation for a time in life I’ll never forget. I laughed at how things have changed in my life in the last six years and how God has used His own sense of humor to bring me to this point of preparing to move to Washington DC to help plant a new church. Ah laughter is truly therapy to my soul.
So here they are, for anyone who wants to know, the answers to those common questions I’ve been getting more frequently as my move date draws near:
“Are you excited?”
Yes, of course I’m excited. I feel like the answer to this goes without saying, but I know I tend to be reserved in my verbal expression of excitement about things when asked, so here is a photo strip of my little sister and I to depict the varying levels of my excitement about moving:
I’m MOST excited about a these things:
- Being in a city again – one with public transportation. I am BEYOND stoked about this fact.
- Meeting our new neighbors and the people the Lord will call me to intentionally invest in for His purposes.
- Building community with our new roomie, Mandi and our new church family at Redeemer City Church.
- Being closer to my family and friends from the surrounding areas of DC and close by states.
“Are you nervous?”
Not at all. I’m a little concerned about why I’m not nervous actually :). But it’s a peaceful time and I know that the things worth being nervous about will all work out. I’m not going to waste my packing energy on thinking too much about any nerves that may arise; if anything I’m curious and ready to explore! My answer to this nerves question can be summoned up with this collage:
*I mean, do I look nervous? 😉
“How are you doing with everything?”
Honestly (because I’m never honest about my feelings)? I’m doing well. I know there are a TON of transitions coming up; it won’t be a change that happens without growing pains, but I’m so grateful to the Lord for truly providing peace beyond comprehension during this time. It would be easy to focus on the fact that we don’t know where we’re going to live yet or to dwell on how much I’m going to miss so many people here – but none of that is productive in my opinion. I’d much rather take advantage of and enjoy the moments I have left here without dwelling on what I can’t change.
On that note though, since I’m feeling sentimental this afternoon, I’ll leave you with just a few of faces I love here in Cali and will miss dearly, as I couldn’t possibly include all of them in this one entry: