I believe there is a balance to all things. Whenever something awful happens, there is usually a good reason for it, or at the very least, something spectacular will happen to balance it out. It works the other way, too, but the thing to remember is that all things change. When things are up, be thankful and enjoy them. When things are down, take comfort in knowing that the pendulum will swing in the other direction before long.
Six months ago, I was on top of the world, it felt like. I had an excellent paying job that I loved, I had a car of my own for the first time in many years, all my bills were paid and caught up, and I was finally on the path to healing, both in body and in mind. But, no matter what we tried and how we brainstormed, we could not seem to keep our situation (financially and otherwise) from constantly spiraling further and further into a black hole. Even though we were making twice what we made before, we were still wasting hundreds of dollars that we should have been spending. After three months, we were really no better off than we were before. Then, one bad decision on my part led to me losing my job, which led to bills piling up, and us losing the rent house. I do feel responsible for the current situation. I know that if I would have kept the job, things would be much different right now. I would hope they would have been better. In reality, though, I am sure there is a good reason that I lost the Awesome Assignment.
Had I stayed working there, DH would not have even considered interviewing for a position that would move us out of town. Even though he didn't get the job, the timing of it and the location of it caused us to consider things we had previously thought were beyond consideration. Because we spent the time to think beyond what we have always done, we are making steps to improve our lives and and the lives of our children.
For a long time we have both said that "Something" had to change. Neither of us knew what that "something" was, but the immediacy of our current situation has forced us out of that rut and now we are changing MANY things. We both value what we have more because we have been forced to give up so much. I am finally sharing the financial responsibilities with DH which is easier on me because I don't carry the burden and shame by myself anymore. I have been able to release the resentment and work along side my husband to improve our lives instead of feeling as if the struggle was mine alone. Most importantly, we have decided - together - that living outside the city would be beneficial to all of us.
The more we look at houses that are in "The Country" the more I want to be there. I want to live in a place where I can see birds and wild animals and trees taller than the houses. I want to drive down the street and not see another apartment or hotel being built where a grove of trees had been before. I want my kids to be able to walk to the library or park, the way I did when I was a kid. This is only possible in the smallest of towns these days, but it IS possible.
Besides cementing the idea of giving up city life, losing the lease on our house has had some very interesting consequences. I have been staying with WP since we moved out of the house. Never before have we visited here for more than a few hours. Several times he has visited us for days, or even months at a time, but staying with HIM is much different. The schedule he keeps and the simple life he leads has been a wonderful example for my children. Not only are they creating memories with their Grandfather that I know will be precious to them for many years, the structure and comfort they experience here is nothing that I could have given them on my own. The only reason my girls have been able to adapt so easily to the changes around them is that they are here, in a familiar place, with people that love and care about them.
One of the best things that has come from this is that my girls have been able to actually experience small town life instead of just hearing about it. They have learned how to adapt to a simpler life. I never could have shown them this while living in the city. There are a hundred little things that alone make very little difference, but together create a life that is so very different from where we came from. Small things like not having a dishwasher, stores that close at 7:00, a library that is close enough to walk to and is safe to be in, and neighbors that know everyone make living here feel so different and peaceful.
I am falling in love with small town life. I don't know which small town we will end up in, but I know I already like this one very much.