This is a simple story of a simple family trying to slow down this crazy life and enjoy the "moments"...

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Goin' Back to Normal...

Last week I sent in my final batch of receipts to the insurance company.
22 months.
Twenty. Two.
It has been almost two years since I began this life force draining long process.

I have confirmation that they received it....and all that needs to happen now is for them to realize that they can NOT depreciate my already depreciated items again.

I wish I didn't have to fight this battle....I'm tired.
But...I'll fight it if I gotta.

The worst that will happen is that we'll be out a bunch of that we've paid this company in on-time premiums faithfully over the last umpteen years....but hey.

It's not salvational.

There seems to be a very fine line between trying to be a good steward and getting criminally charged with harassment of an insurance agent.

Ah well.

Gotta tell you that when I got the "We got them and you're done" email from my agency I truly felt like I could stand up straight for the first time in....well.....possibly 22 months??

All of my storm related responsibilities (other then the harassment) are done.

We've been in our new place for 6 months and it's starting to feel "homey":
I know what some many most of the light switches do....
I can pull into the garage without whacking my side mirrors....
My kids can walk to the bathroom in the middle of the night (usually) without slamming into door frames....
The first "round" of light bulbs has burnt out and I now know how to undo each fixture and replace them...
The kids have memorized our new address...

More than anything else though....we've begun to have "gatherings" here again.
Filling our house with people makes it home faster than anything else.

We've had parties and dinners and Young Life and meetings and birthdays and Wyldlife and holidays....and each time I have to tell someone where the forks are located or find (or buy) extra towels  or figure out where to set up the dinner buffet...

I get more comfortable.
This house becomes more mine.

So---the question.

Are we "over it"?
Has that bizarre little incident from almost two years ago melted down into a vague experience that I can look back on as nothing but a blessing for the new perspectives it has give us?

And no.

Yes....because when I speak about it (as it still seems I'm asked to do at LEAST once a week by random people) I always conclude by expressing my EXTREME gratefulness that God gave us a beautiful perspective change without letting anything really bad happen.

And when a well-wisher expresses sympathy about our old house....I tell them very sincerely that the house was NOTHING without the people in it....and those we have.

And I mean that!

These are truly the things I have taken out of this experience and hold close to my heart.

But then "Tornado Awareness Week" comes on TWC and simulated tree trunks pierce through the exterior wall of a computer home....
and I get shaky for a minute.

Or my eldest chooses his experience with the tornado as the topic for his essay on "When God Became Really Real to Me" and I proof read it for him.  And have to pretend I'm coughing so he won't see me crying.

Or I drive down a street still devoid of living trees and the kids point out a bumper wrapped around a lifeless tree trunk and my stomach lurches.

Or my dentist asks me when I chipped my tooth and I tell him May 22 two years ago and he smiles sadly and pats my arm and I irritatingly have to fight back tears in the dumb dentist chair.

Or RH has to ask me for the 739th time to PLEASE get the rest of the stuff out of the warehouse where it's been stored for TWENTY TWO months.  And I realize that I'm putting it off not because "I haven't' used the stuff in two years so I probably don't need it" (like I tell everyone) but because I HATE HATE HATE HATE smelling the old insulation and seeing such a huge messed-up-garage-sale-reject-looking-pile of my "old" life smashed together into a dark corner of a dark building.

So...yes and no, right?

Is it in the top 14 things on my mind every day?


Does it still rise to #4 or #6 a few times each week?


And again....I know it's not just me.

Bennett's teacher talked to me today about how hard it is for her to drive through "tornado alley"...which is the path the storm took through the city.

Several friends have spoken to me about how nervous they are with spring coming....and the storms that usually accompany it.

They hygienist cleaning my teeth proceeds to tell me her "story" while I'm stuck with my mouth wide open sitting in the chair and she gets teary.

We're healing healing healing as a city....but we're not HEALED.

Or maybe we're as healed as we're gonna be...and all these things are just part of the new normal.
The normal that's now not so new....or something.

Here's (I think) a good summer-upper.

That "Where should you go in a tornado" segment came on a-flippin-gain last night.

RH asked Ethan, "Where's the safest place in a tornado?"
Ethan said he didn't know.
"In God's arms."
"Yeah....not in a brown truck in the back seat," said my sagacious 9-year old.

Then RH told his son that if a tornado came he should pray....but he should pray as he was running like a bat out of hades to the basement.

A little common sense, a lot of prayer, some humor and a ton sprinkle of Shake's... and we should make it through.