Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Finding center

I have found that sometimes the best progress in unpacking happens around dinner time.  I begin to cook, and my three big guys, being hungry, stand by waiting.  I discover that I need a particular utensil, and suddenly Shawn, David and Jon are all out in the garage, ripping through boxes, searching for that-which-will-occasion-dinner-to-be-served.

This was not intentional on my part, initially.  But human nature being what it is, I am not making any promises that I will refrain from capitalizing on the phenomenon. 

The upshot, however, is that there are a very lot of open boxes, half rifled through, sitting in the garage.  Sometimes we find things like the original electric knife.  It has been fragile ever since, years ago, a former co-worker of Shawn's yanked the blades out of it without pushing the release button, cracking the casing (this was at a company Thanksgiving luncheon).  We babied it along, and actually we bought a replacement and ought to have thrown it away.  But it still worked, so we didn't.  The Bad Packer threw it into a box, loose, the blades loose as well, and fortunately we saw it splayed among "kitchen misc" before we had reached into the box and cut off our fingers by mistake.  We found all of the parts, and set them gently aside on top of a different box.

Yesterday I emptied the last two boxes in our bedroom.  I hope they are not the last two boxes of stuff from our bedroom, because important things are still missing.  But they were the last two boxes that were occupying our bedroom, and it was a huge feeling of relief to get them out.  Triumphantly, I carried them out to the garage.  The moving company tells you to empty the packing paper into the largest boxes and then flatten the smaller boxes, so I emptied the first box of its packing paper and then looked around the garage for an implement I could use to cut it down.  My eyes fell on the electric knife blades, and I used one--it worked beautifully--to slice the packing tape.  Then I turned to the second box, stuffed its packing paper into the same large box, and went to grasp the blade to use once more.

It was gone.  I could not find it.  I gazed around at my garage full of open, partially unpacked boxes containing my pulverized former belongings next to large, unpacked boxes overflowing with used packing paper.  I surveyed flattened boxes, garbage cans, furniture that does not fit into the house, bicycles, shoes, and even genuine garage items.  Also my Odyssey van.  I could not turn around.  Forlornly atop a nearby box sat the electric knife base and its one remaining blade, only one; the set was no longer intact.  Nothing was intact.  My life was not intact.  The bottom dropped out of my stomach.  I felt as though I could not breathe and then I started to sob, the undignified sounds echoing among the cardboard boxes on the concrete garage floor.

I cried until the sound of myself made me sick, which did not take very long.

Jon kindly helped me find the missing knife blade.  It was on top of the van.  I cut down the box, laid it on the pile, and spearheaded a shopping trip during which, among other things, we bought a toaster oven because I cannot find the toaster, and I got a pedicure because I have not been able to find the things needed to clean up my nasty, peeling toenails.

This morning I awoke, and my sheets were clean because we have a washer and dryer now.  My bed was centered under the ceiling fan, and my dresser was centered across from the foot of my bed, because our boys helped us move them around last night.  I felt better.  And Jesus reminded me that He brought me here.  This is the house He led us to, when He shut all the other doors.  God is with me, and He will never leave me nor forsake me.  It is going to be ok.

It is going to be ok.

Or, as they say here, "You're fine."

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