Monday, April 10, 2017

Best Laid Plans…

My husband and I have almost identical personality types…only I’m an extrovert and he’s an introvert.  But basically, we are can-do types who are very organized and like to plan and control things.  Our attempt at taking a northern VA job and moving to Front Royal was no different.  As a result, God likes to remind us every so often that we are not the ones in control…He is.  Apparently, this is one of those times.

Steve got an incredible job offer in TX early last week which he had to respond to by the end of the day on Friday.  We never really intended to take it…I mentioned last week that it was just a backup plan to the northern VA job.  But it seems God had a different path for us!  Steve did finally receive a verbal offer on Friday after they stalled all week long, but they wouldn’t put it in writing until the following week, and they had no details other than a salary.  They only came up with that much information after serious pressure by the recruiter.  It was the same base salary as the TX job, but no allowance for a vehicle (which was $800/mo. at the TX company), and zero information on any other benefits.  Not only would they not take the time to put it in writing, even in an email, but they made the mistake of saying they had reservations even about that amount.  That was the last straw for Steve.  He started to have reservations about the job itself and the lack of support he might expect from a company that’s based out of town and is too busy to wrap up a job offer for which he’s been interviewing for the last 6 weeks.  He realized he’d been trying to push it along the whole time, and their offer did not show him that they really wanted him there.  Since the position/location was new ground for this Tampa-based company, he decided the TX offer was a safer bet for stability and a better offer, even though it was a lateral position to his current job.

So much to my shock and dismay, Steve officially accepted the TX job on Friday, and we will be moving to the Fort Worth area, hopefully at the end of June after Hayden’s graduation!  What’s more, he starts on May 1st, so he’ll be leaving in less than 3 weeks, and he won’t be back at all!  No vacation the first year, so he won’t even be able to come back for Hayden’s high school graduation, which is probably one of the saddest parts.  The ceremony is mid-week for whatever reason, so there’s no chance of flying home on the weekend for it, either.

Sigh.  So here we are!  We’re embarking on what will surely be a trying and difficult period of change, but I know that once we get settled, we’ll be fine.  The upside is that there will be plenty to do there, and homeschooling is completely unrestricted and popular there, so there are lots of support groups, sports and activities for the kids.  We’ll also be very close to Six Flags over Texas and Six Flags Hurricane Harbor amusement parks, so we might actually get to go regularly.

I have to admit that as I made the drive to Front Royal for our annual vacation yesterday, I did cry big tears when I came up over the hill and got my first glimpse of the mountains.  Inside, I’m so devastated that not only will we not be moving here any time soon, but we’re also not likely to vacation here again.  That’s probably the hardest part.  We all feel such a letdown when we leave the cabin every year, and the only thing that makes it bearable is the knowledge that we’ll be returning the following year.  So while we’re so happy to be here right now, it’s also bittersweet, being the last time.  We’ve been fortunate to be able to come here for the last 10 years.  It’s been such a blessing, and I’m very thankful!  It is truly the place I go in my mind’s eye whenever life stresses me out.  It’s our little piece of Heaven on earth.

I went out on the porch overlooking the Shenandoah River and the mountains to read a book and sip some tea this afternoon.  It was such a beautiful, truly perfect day.  I didn’t get a lot of sleep last night and was exhausted from the drive up, so I decided to stretch out in the double rocker with a pillow and blanket, and in no time at all, I was blissfully asleep, enjoying the peaceful nature sounds and the sound of the rapids below.  It was the best nap ever!

I’m still trying to wrap my mind around this move.  I can hardly fathom that we are going halfway across the country to an even hotter climate!  I was quite looking forward to the average annual snowfall of 24 inches in Front Royal.  But there was certainly a hard and valuable life lesson in this…God managed to remind me to follow His leading while blessing us with an incredible job offer at the same time.  I’m so thankful for His provision!

On to the next adventure…