In a quick synopsis, my oldest daughter married the son of one of my best friends from high school days two years ago. A marriage made in Mother Heaven. The bad news is they left the church, amidst bubbles and kisses, to move to Clinton, Missouri. (Which is 597 miles, or 961 kilometers, away from home. But who is counting?)
I've consoled myself over the years by keeping a running list of all the times we have seen each other since. So far, the tally is 15 visits: some for fun reasons, but many included sad occasions. The good news is that we've learned to bridge this distance gap and see each other as often as we can.
I may have mentioned a time or twenty how much I admire this young couple. They both make good salaries, but have determined their first priority is to pay off college student loans and debt of any sort. They've made steady progress, but as a result they've had to put off things like new furniture and fancy vacations. (They've also sacrificed all their vacation time to come help me during D's past surgeries, recoveries and finally, funeral services.)
They've found their place in their newly adopted small town. They've made "couple" friends, found a strong church home and have given to their neighborhood and community. And just when life began to have an even keel? Young son-in-law was offered a promotion that required a move to Pennsylvania. (That is 1321 miles or 2125 kilometers from here. We seem to be moving in the wrong direction.)
My daughter's take on this move when she (gently) broke the news to me? "Well, we learned how to move in, make friends and find a church pretty quickly. I think we can do that anyplace we move."
WOW. All I have ever wanted is to stay in one place forever. And that hasn't happened. What God spoke to my heart years ago was that life is not about stability: it is about having the ability to change. Because you better believe change is around every corner. Seems at half my age, my daughter has already learned that lesson.
My hat is off to them both for their good attitudes, because the job her husband is in will probably involve more moves in the future. Right now they are in a mad rush to finish projects that will leave their home ready to sell before the first of the year. But they are willing to stop and welcome me and Young Son for Christmas amidst their packing-up and painting. And I know we will have a wonderful visit.
So, here is to the young couple: may your move go smoothly, your house sell for a profit and your future hometown contain many good friends and a church that feels like home. Can't wait to visit you in Pennsylvania in 2010. (And wondering if you know the company has a branch in Texas 132 miles or 212 kilometers from home? Just saying.)
God speed to my favorite couple. Your attitude inspires me.