Monday, September 12, 2011

From the Outside

From the outside looking in, our life since the tornado might give you whiplash. Here's an overview:

- search for teaching job looks iffy
- decide to move into a 1br/1ba apartment after wedding
- not sure how to pay for 1br/1ba apartment after wedding
- family offers to let us live in an old house and pay no rent
- tornado trashes the free house we are supposed to move into
- we are homeless
- I am jobless
- we decide not to try to fix the house
- a team from Boise offers to repair the hole in the roof
- we decide to try to fix the house
- we get married
- rehearsal is the Rehearsal from Hell and I start to regret even having a wedding
- wedding is good - goes by too quickly, but it was a happy day
- we go on an awesome honeymoon
- we avoid thinking about the house while on the honeymoon
- we don't think we can continue fixing the house
- people work on our house while we are on our honeymoon
- people work on our house the week after our honeymoon
- people give us donations to help make it through the summer
- I am still jobless
- friends and family come out to get the house "liveable"
- we move into the house
- I am still jobless
- I get a job teaching preschool
- I turn 26 and go through 2 weeks of a quarter-life crisis
- Blake starts PhD program and is immediately super-busy
- house is a major undertaking
- I have to quit my job at the preschool
- I start subbing
- house is stressing us out
- agree to have major projects at house finished by December
- heavy rains reveal over a dozen leak in the roof, three of which are MAJOR
- family decides not to put any more $$ into the house and we can't afford to replace the roof
- we decide we have to move
- we look for and find an apartment
- we move in with my mom so we can turn off the power at the house (and save ourselves $200)
- we schedule our move to our apartment on Sept. 24

If your head isn't spinning, I applaud you. It's been a crazy year so far, and I am hoping that we are heading in the direction of Peace. My heart has been through a season of extremes - extreme gratitude, extreme joy, extreme amazement, extreme disappointment, extreme confusion, extreme stress. Married life has honestly not been that fun so far because of all the stress. I mean, we get it - "welcome to the real world." (And let me say that I don't appreciate that comment! We get it - everyone deals with stress - but please remember we did not choose for this tornado to hit our house and twist our life into a confusing and chaotic mess!) We have done the best we could with what we've been given.

The decision (not even sure you would call it a decision, more of a necessity) to move has been the most peaceful decision we have made since April 27. There is so much relief - one of those "a giant weight has been lifted" kind of feelings. After we paid the security deposit, we were so happy. Being married has been so different since we signed those papers! We still have a lot to figure out and we are not "out of the woods," but we are at least moving in the right direction.

It's hard for me not to look back and wish we had done things differently. But I can't look back. We have to look forward, otherwise we'll get wrapped up in doubt and more confusion. To those of you who supported us or prayed for us or helped us work, we are eternally grateful. Though we may be moving out of the house, the generosity of our friends, family, and strangers was a tangible measure of God's grace that we cannot deny or regret. No one's work or money or prayers were in vain - every ounce of provision was a blessing to us in our greatest hour of need.

At this point, I don't know if the house was a blessing or a curse. In many ways, it was both. But despite the frustration of working so hard and going through so much just to have a place to live only to end up walking away less than a month after moving in - God is still faithful. As hard as the summer was, I am thankful for what we have been through. I am grateful for the experience, grateful for God's discipline, grateful for His grace and mercy, grateful for His provision, grateful for learning to Trust Him alone. I hope we never have to go through something like that again, but I'm thankful that He has led us through it and out of it.

Things are beginning to look up for us, even though life is still pretty uncertain (but isn't it always?). I have this sneaking suspicion that the rest of 2011 is going to get better from here on out. The past week and a half has been tough, but life has been lighter. It has been happier, calmer, more peaceful. And the Lord knows we need some peace. :)


  1. Katie, while I hate to hear about the house and the leaks, there are some benefits to living in an apartment. For one, the landlord takes care of maintenance! You and Blake are a strong couple, and I know it's going to get better for you two.

  2. Robyn - we are SO excited about that part!!!! Haha!!! Leaky faucet? Call the landlord! AC not getting where we want it? Call the landlord! Problems with the trash bin? Call the landlord! :) And it's going to help cut down on lots of other expenses - gas & car maintenance being two huge ones, since we will essentially be driving half as much as we are now. I think things ARE getting better!!!