As the pastel colors of dusk faded to grey and darkness swallowed the remnants of day my mental resolve grew determined. Initially we aimed to bridge our move with an overnight stay in Kennewick, Washington, but trucks with huge loads, kids and a dog presented far too many variables for certainty.
Youth is no longer on my side and I mentally braced myself for this night. I’ve never been a night owl but this time the thought of going to the bathroom on the side of a pitch-dark road sent shivers up my spine. I couldn’t rely on energy drinks and coffee to energize me.
No moon, few stars and towering trees lining the streets left darkness. Every direction light attempted to push through the thick night hedged our headlights. My daughter fell asleep, her baby doll in her arms and my mind began to wander, to wonder What on earth are we doing? Is this really Your direction Lord?
Darkness is sobering.
Physically there’s no running when surrounded by darkness and the same holds true spiritually and emotionally. Safely asleep in the backseat I knew I wouldn’t wake my daughter with quiet tears. Hours away from home I already missed my life, more importantly the people I shared life with. Headed to a foreign life the possibility of loneliness and the unknown jockeyed for space to spring from my eyes and down my cheeks.
Change is exciting, but with every change come insecure moments.
What did God purpose for our family? Such an odd place to move us, but God was deliberate. Past experiences made me hesitate full throttle excitement in this moment.
Sometimes God moves us to harder spaces.
Sometime God hems us in with struggle and difficultly that reveal an unsteady heart.
Sometimes we writhe and with all our might hang on to the last thread of faith.
Every time we cling to the Light we arrive at a new destination, familiar only because we know the source of our triumph and see the improvements He made in our hearts along the way.
Doubt held at bay I allowed sadness space to breathe and called two close friends I already missed. What better cure for a sad heart than to talk with night owls? But there always comes a moment when silence returns. Seven hours left to our destination and distance from friends meant that moment came too soon.
A New Destination
Night’s quiet was startled by the ring tone of my phone. Exhausted, my husband expressed concern about reaching our destination. Though I was determined to reach Kennewick so the next leg would be shorter my husband needed a break.
Teamwork doesn’t come naturally for me. Over the years I’ve made severe mistakes, most laughable now, but those few instances that hurt those I love are a reminder to play nicely, especially my husband (though honestly, as a stubborn baby of the family and only girl, I’m still learning this).
Sometimes I’m so bent on having my expectations met (or exceeded) that I sacrifice the greater good. It’s shortsighted and dangerous on far too many levels. It’s taken me nearly forty years to figure this out.
There’s no sense in arriving anywhere ragged and there’s certainly no reason to take unnecessary risks. Reluctantly, though agreeably, I looked into lodging in Bend, Oregon, still a three hours away considering the load we drove.
Pulled over by Lake Klamath in the dead of night I utilized the unusual cellular reception to research lodging. Quickly I learned multiple sporting events were meeting that weekend and only a single vacancy remained in all of Bend.
We arrived and through half-shut eyes we waited for the night manager to find the room we booked. We waited, waited and waited more. Two in the morning and we continued for a bed to rest our heads.