Thursday, April 28, 2011

Our Story, part three

You can catch up on part one and part two here and here.

I knew we had made the right choice when I left my job.  The Hubby really wanted me to be home.  We had realized that financially it would have been silly for me to stay.  Even with the discounted-for-employees rate, the childcare available at my place of work would have still cost me almost half of my paycheck.  Even if I somehow miraculously managed to work eight hours every day and no more (basically impossible for a teacher) I would only have been bringing home, after child care, about $6 an hour.  Not worth the sacrifice of being with my baby girl.

Looking back, it's amazing how quickly I got better.  I was still throwing up through the end of May (right up through 24 weeks) but after I quit and school ended, I was so much better.  It really makes me wonder how much of difficulty early in my pregnancy was stress-induced, and if my gall-bladder conked out because of the stress, too.

At this point, we knew we'd still both be getting paychecks through the end of June.  We also had several great job possibilities lined up for him, so we felt pretty good and confident.  I thought we'd already reached the climax of the conflict in this part of our story and was happily awaiting a lovely resolution.

Unfortunately, those options fell through for various reasons.  We left for Young Life camp at the end of June.  I was sixth months pregnant, and while my back and hips were keeping me awake at night with pain, and my pregnancy-induced heart issue was pretty bad, I was feeling pretty good; lots of energy and always enjoying the magic and blessing of growing life.  I loved petting and patting my belly, loved feeling her kick like crazy, loved it when others wanted to feel her kick.  I loved that she was mine-all-mine for the time being, and I was getting more excited every day about growing our little family.

Young Life camp was, as usual, wonderful.  My girls were a blast and we lived life well that week.  We spent an awful lot of time thinking up baby names and cracking up over some of the crazy names in the book I'd brought.  We ate candy and stayed up late and laughed and talked and cried.  In many ways, it was our best camp trip of all time.

In the middle of the week, Hubby and I went to the assigned team house for a staff lunch.  The sweet man running the meeting after lunch surveyed the room, noticed the high number of women with big, pregnant bellies and started speaking that age-old speech line, "I was going to talk about ____, but I feel moved to talk about something else..."  He then dove head-first into a lovely soliloquy on the joys of raising a family while on Young Life text.

I fought back tears the entire time, clutching my husband's hand like if I let go I might drown, and he stared out the window.

It was like a completely accidental slap in the face.  That was the life we wanted, the life we had dreamed about and had been living for so long.  We never wanted to leave Young Life.  We had simply come to a financial and emotional dead-end, and we knew were being called elsewhere.

It would be hard to find two more loyal people than my husband and me.  When we find something we love, we stick to it like bees to honey, drinking it in and working hard and talking it up and fighting through tough times.  Believe me, there had been tough times.  I believe that hard times can tell you that you are doing something right.  We could never have left had it not been impossible for us to stay.

We went home encouraged because our kids were amazing, but discouraged because we it felt like we'd lost our place.  I had thought we'd make the best of our now unemployed situation by just enjoying some free time together, but newsflash; vacation because you are unemployed ain't no vacation.  It's stressful.  We still spent some time at the beach with my parents, finished a home renovation, and spent time with friends.

I remember losing it a couple of times.  Once, in either June or July, I called our dental insurance to argue with them for the umpteenth time over a bill they just couldn't seem to process correctly.  The lady wouldn't listen to me, and kept insisting that we just had to pay this bill.  I hung up the phone and cried so hard I couldn't breathe.  It was silly, I knew, and I knew we could pay that bill no problem if we had to.  (We didn't; they were wrong, like I tried to tell them!)  But it was just a silly little thing that left me feeling like the whole world was conspiring against us.

We moved about in a daze, it felt.  No income.  No options.  Hubby took another class, then another, trying to use up the time off.  Then, lo and behold, Hubby got a call.  We had arrived at the beach with my family for a free long-weekend that morning, and he turned around and drove the three hours back home for an interview.  He felt confident, and we thought things were turning around.  He was offered a job, and we rejoiced, then became completely deflated when the salary offer was significantly less than we anticipated.  He turned it down.  

We took a long weekend and, on a total whim, went to Niagara Falls before YoungLives camp, which was one of the best decisions we ever made.  We lived in our camper and ate hot dogs over the fire and visited every bathroom the national park had to offer because the baby was using my bladder as a trampoline and we loved every second of the trip.  We were back in our zone at camp, loving and serving and I felt full of energy even with my hugely swollen feet.

We felt nervous as we came back to the real world, because it was almost the middle of August and still nothing had changed.  With my due date looming only 9 weeks away, we wondered what was next and anticipated a miracle.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love hearing from my readers! Thank you for taking the time to comment. All comments are reviewed before publishing.