I freely admit that the title of this post is stolen material. As in The Hobbit, I recently experienced a trying round-trip journey that led eventually to a life renewed and transformed.
Yes, I am talking about moving! Specifically, I’m talking about moving into our house with our gang of loveable misfits known as the Portland Jeremiah House, which involved a truck and several hours of heavy lifting.
We experienced the normal travails involved in moving: lifting heavy boxes, playing Tetris with belongings as we fit the truck (Eric officially coined the verb ‘tetris’ as in “we have to tetris these boxes in between these chairs”), and having everything take much longer than we had hoped. But I also had the wonderful privilege (read that as sarcasm) of making an extra round trip with the truck afterward.
What happened was that after I drove all the way back from the new house to drop off the truck and was filling it with gas, Chrissy called to inform me I had neglected to bring the key to our car that was waiting at U-Haul for me.
My dad was in the truck with me, so I summed up the news with “Chrissy just told me the worst thing she could have possibly told me.” Of course, my dad rightly put things in perspective for me, seeing as no one was dead and nothing on fire. But seriously, after a long day of moving, adding another hour to the drive time and $0.89/mile was not my idea of a good time.
I was (completely understandably in my opinion) very unhappy for the whole drive back to the house, but on my way (again) to drop off the truck at U-Haul, I finally began to relax a little bit and accept the situation. After waiting for 10 or 15 minutes in the cold for the U-Haul employee to come back from her break, I then began my final return for the night.
It was on this last leg of the drive that I finally was in the right mental state to remember the significance of the whole day.
My statement at the beginning of this post about a journey leading to life transformation may not have been totally accurate. The journey mostly led to wasted time, money, and gas. But the important part about the trip was that it was a necessary piece of the whole day’s efforts: We did it! We’re doing it! We are now residing in the Portland Jeremiah House and can start living our mission daily.
I’m so excited about this next step we have taken and are still taking. It has only been two days, and I’m already loving being here with the Conklins and spending a little while with Michael and Susan yesterday afternoon (they will be moving in with us in a couple months).
Chrissy and I spent several hours cleaning our old apartment yesterday, and when I came home, I thought I wanted nothing more than to be alone and away from other people. But within minutes of talking with everyone and planning out the next weeks and just getting to be with other people who care about each other and who are sharing a life and a vision together, I couldn’t have been happier that I wasn’t alone and away from other people.
As with the move and the frustration of an added trip back and forth, this process will be difficult sometimes, but I’m so excited for what’s to come and knowing that I will share it all with Chrissy, Evelyn, Eric, Mira, Auggie, Susan, and Michael. These people make my life better, and they provide the worthwhile destination at the end of rough roads.