We are home. Finally. Home. Tonight is the first night we will spend in our new house. Yes, we are on air mattresses and the only chairs we have are folding outdoor chairs we bought at Target yesterday, but we are here. Safe and sound and so very grateful.
When we moved to Hickory, Kevin and I had neither one ever moved out of town. As a matter of fact, Kevin still lived in the same house he had since he was two. I had moved once when I was 16, but just down the road a ways. We had no idea what we were getting into. We had no idea that a moving van could break down and delay the delivery of our things. We had no idea to ask for a hotel room from his new company, so we slept on pads on the floor of our new apartment for several nights. We just didn’t know.
This time, we knew what to expect. We ordered Instabeds to be here waiting for us. We stayed in a hotel two nights so that we could get our new home livable. We went shopping for groceries and supplies. What we didn’t expect was the welcome we got when we arrived. Our wonderful realtor left us balloons and beach towels and sunscreen. The previous owners left us a bottle of wine and a card. We met our sweet next-door neighbors who just had us for dinner tonight and already treats us like their life long friends. We received lemons over the fence from another neighbor. We met our neighbor across the street that is a teacher and has two preschoolers. We went to the beach for a few hours and it only took 13 minutes to get there. We have been blessed beyond all our expectations.
This blissfulness did not come without some tensions along the way. The drive from the Grand Canyon to Oceanside was one of the longest days of our lives. We didn’t realize that we would drive through 107 degrees heat for hours on end with only desert surrounding us. We didn’t know that after day five of this journey we would want to strangle each other for the slightest irritations. We didn’t know the beauty of the San Bernardino Mountains or the joy we would feel when we finally saw the sign that said, “Welcome to Oceanside”. We just didn’t know. These moments of “not knowing” are the moments we have no map for. We can’t predict what will happen at each and every turn, no matter how much we plan. All we can do is be grateful. Grateful that we made it through the desert. Grateful that we didn’t strangle each other. Grateful that our cars made the 2379 miles trip without any issues. Grateful that our dogs survived hours in the car and seven different hotels. We are grateful beyond all measure. That, we do know.