Is it ridiculous how in love with all my blog friends I am? I think it might make me a bit pathetic how excited I was to see that some folks are actually still taking time to stop in, even though I've terribly neglected you all summer. Now you know why... I've been on this roller coaster ride and it's just consumed my thoughts but I couldn't say anything.
Anyway, here are the details....
I leave on Friday to find a school and house for us. I'll come home and then the whole family will embark on this adventure (picture the Clampets on a plane) sometime around the week of September 15. I'm excited and nervous, all at the same time.
We will be living on Oahu. Brian will work in Honolulu. The initial contract is signed through January 30, but we may be extended, may not. I really feel that the Lord has given this to me in bite sized pieces. I can get my head around five months in paradise. And once we are there and settled, if it extends to the end of next year, I can deal with that then.
I have really seen God all over this. We love love love our home and our community, but a new location is something we have talked about many times. Just never really wanted to CHOOSE to leave this little bubble that we live in. This is the perfect solution for us because we can go, have this experience, know it's temporary, and still come home again.
As if God just couldn't lavish us enough, He has provided for our home and our kitty in our absence too. My dear friend's mom is going to stay here and take care of the yard, take care of the cat (who we love despite ourselves) and take care of my friend while we are gone. (My friend lives across the street, so this feels like God was really caring for her while He was caring for us.) I have just seen God in every little detail of this, which is how I know it's right. The only thing I can hardly stand to think about is that my dog, Vince, will not get to go with us. Hawaii has a quarantine of 120 days to bring a pet on the island, so we would not take him with us. I love this dog! He has become so calm and sweet (after three years of puppy-hood) and he is starting to gray around the eyes already. I know he will change alot while we are gone. My dad has offered to let him stay on the farm, which is great in alot of respects. However, my dad does not allow the dogs into the house, EVER. He will live in my dad's shop with his other dog, Big Al (a black lab/duck retrieving wonder-dog.) The shop is heated in the winter, there are beds in there for the dogs, and my dad has a pond in the horse pasture that Vince swims in every day when he stays there. I know, it sounds like Retriever Disney, but for me, thinking of him outside all the time, not curled up to my bed every night, is very sad.
Leaving to search for a house by myself is totally outside my comfort zone. But Brian and I felt it was important for one of us to be with the kids. They are handling it pretty well, but Jack has mixed emotions (understandably, he's the one in middle school) so we just didn't want to leave them. Since I am the one who attends all the IEP meetings, understands the school needs the most, etc., it was more logical for me to go. This is such a stretch for me. I will overthink the whole thing, I will waffle, and in the end, I will doubt myself because that's how I make decisions. And every time there is any issue with our location or the school, I will blame myself for the choice I made. So even this little step feels like a real gift from God because it's such a stretch for me. I am going to be pruned and groomed in new ways that I know are needed to deliver me to where I need to be.
I really can't wait to experience a new culture and a new place. It's initially such a short time that it just feels more like an adventure than a move. But I will deeply miss my friends. I know I will depend on this community (bloggers) more than ever because I am such a social person that I don't know that I can live without my gal-pals. We will be five hours behind TN so even phone conversations might be a challenge. (I'll have to figure out what time is too late to call anyone and get up extra early to chat with my friends on their special days.) I think one of the things I am most excited about is that this may be the only time in our lives and the lives of our children when they will be a racial minority. Where on Earth would God likely call our family that this would happen (believe me, I know that alot of you are thinking Africa, but if God gets my husband to Africa, then you should all know that the end times are upon us.... or I have divorced and married a different man. :) ha!) Likewise, it may be the only time in her life when Meg appears to be in the majority! :) God's sense of humor is pretty funny, huh?
Okay, I think that's all the details I can think of for now. I am sure there will be 1000 questions I have for those of you who have done this type of thing before and I've already taken advice from Barb (anyone need a good used Sequoia?) But for now this is where we are. Whew!