Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Change - (Not what you think)

Back in May I took some time away from the blogging world to try and get my head around some serious life changes that were potentially coming up.

That change came.

As of November 1st I am once again a renter.

I want to tell you the whole story but my heart cannot bring myself to do that just yet. I will tell you that I am thankful that we found a home we can afford. I feel blessed that we are living within the same block in the same school district with bedrooms for all and even a landlord that welcomed our dog Teddy.

I am excited about what lies ahead with this new beginning.

The hard part is ignoring the years of wreckage lying behind me. We have lived in our home for almost 11 years. And now all we have are memories.

The most amazing thing about this entire situation is the attitude of my children. We sat them both down and told them that we were going to have to move and that we may have to move so far that they would have to change schools.

George understood and said, “You know what Dad that house is falling apart and it will be good to start over with something nicer and better.”

Gillian was the one who blew us both away. She interrupted and said, “But Georgie I am the only one who can get really upset about all of this!” We all looked at her trying to understand where she was coming from. She went on, “That is the only home I have ever lived in. I was brought home from the hospital into that house so really, I am the only one who has never lived anywhere else!”

I couldn’t say a word. My eyes were filled with tears and my heart stung in my chest. I was such a failure. I failed my kids and my daughter was calling me out, right here at a restaurant.

She continued, “But you know what dad, it’s just a house. Wherever we go will be our home. It’s just a house, it doesn’t matter.”

Through the same tears that are in my eyes now as I write this I said, “Gillian, whatever you do, never forget that. You’re 10 and you understand something that many adults don’t. Walls and a roof may make a house, but they cannot make a home.”

I may have failed at keeping my house, but I succeeded at raising amazing children.

It’s just a house. It doesn’t matter.

We will always have a home wherever that may be.

20 comments:

landileigh said...

my dear friend,
i read this blog with tears in my eyes, as i too have been going through this change. the day they put the sign up, the pit opened up in my stomach, and i felt like a failure. my daughter said to me "mommy, new beginnings, new beginnings"

we raised good kids, and if that is the legacy we live behind in my life, then i did DAMN GOOD and so DID YOU! }}

ScW said...

That is just awesome, George. Good stuff. I know it's hard, but obviously you've got a plan and you're raising your kids right.

Lea said...

George, you are providing so much of the important stuff for your kids...stuff that has no price tag. I see no failure in that.
Hang in there, and know that God will always provide.
Belssings to you and your family in your new home.

type1emt said...

you have got some amazing kids there, now I have tears in my eyes

growing up,my family was constantly moving but we were a family and that's to be treasured more then living in a mansion. Your kids get that.

Vivian said...

George, I never want to hear you say that word again! Failure? Are you kidding me? You are Ninja! Look at your amazing family, how can you say you have failed at anything? Life happens and we learn a bit and we move on. Open yourself up to the idea that God has a plan in all of it. I have lost all my earthly belongings more than once and each time it was a door I am glad I walked through because what was on the other side was so much better. We love you guys and even though we are waaaay over here and you are waaaaay over there....we are here for ya. You have our prayers, if you need anything else, please let us know. Remember, Ninja families always land on their feet. ;)
Viv

Araby62 (a.k.a. Kathy) said...

You and your family will survive, and be better for the journey. We in the OC have faith in you :)

Dana said...

It is evident that you wisely spent more of your time and energy in your children as opposed to slaving away for a house. That is a feat, not a failure, and I'm blown away by their insight and your parental skill.

Colleen said...

Thank you for telling us. You know, we're your family, too! Let the kids know that we're proud of them. And no, how can you be a failure when you've raised a wonderful family, have a great wife, and inspire so many of us?! You'll be in my prayers.

Cara said...

You are an amazing person. Failure is all in how you look at it. I don't see it as failure, just as a hard part of life. It's only failure if you let it destroy you and your family, which you obviously haven't done.
I will be praying for you. Keep on keeping on. You can do it.

Nicole P said...

George - You see where your children get it from right? Their grace and good nature, that is? It's from you and your wife. And it's really quite lovely to hear about. Sending you big hugs and lots of love - Nicole

George said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

All of your kind words provide so much healing. I cannot thank you all enough. You are all great.

Scott K. Johnson said...

G-Money - you know where I am at with all this stuff, we've talked about it in detail before.

While it is not always easy, our job here is to follow, as best we can, the path that God lays down before us.

Sometimes that means we have to walk through some real crap to see the "why" of it all. Your kids have given you a head start on that vision, God bless them for that.

I love you bro - looking forward to when we don't have to worry about this kind of crap. In the meantime you know that there's a good listener only a twit away.

Minnesota Nice said...

Oh phooey, George. Yet, here you are, sifting through the sludge of this big challenge and finding the bits of good that can still be acknowledged. Bless your kids for being so insightful and mature. And bless you and Jasmine for raising these remarkable children.
Sigh.

PS -I did not know you had a dog. Maybe he could be in a vlog post sometime.

Jillian said...

George, to reiterate what everyone else has said, you are the opposite of a failure. You are raising amazing children who are a reflection of their wonderful father (and mother). The road can definitely be rough, but little moments like your daughter's statement make the journey worthwhile. What is meant to be will be.

talesofmy30s said...

My parents had to make that choice, to barely survive on a mortgage vs. renting right before my senior year of high school. I know it wasn't easy, but I knew it was best.

Kids know after a certain point what's best. I'm convinced of it.

Jaimie said...

I know this must be so difficult for your family...your kids are amazing and that is because of U! :)

matters of the heart are truely what the kids will remember...not material things...


My husband and I have gone back and forth with the same issue this year...it's not easy to have in the back of your mind all the time...

God never gives you more than you can handle but he sure can push the envelope sometimes...everything happens for a reason and you all will survive this and whatever else comes your way!
Keep Pressin' George! We will keep your family in our prayers...

Bernard said...

George

It sounds like both of you made the right choice to move on from a difficult place. I'm sure that it was a huge struggle.

Way back when I had to move quickly for various family issues (previous marriage). It wasn't easy, but God provided. Today I'm in a very different space.

I hope that all of you enjoy your new home. Brother I'll say prayers for you and your family.

Hannah said...

You have applied your ninja skills to your whole family, and you've made them strong and caring just like you. It doesn't matter where you end up hanging your hat (or katanas or what have you), because it's so obvious you are surrounded by love and wonderful folks to share it with.

I'm glad that you are finding the sunny sides in this difficult time.

Major Bedhead said...

George - we went thru this a year ago and it was hard and it sucked, but your kids are right - it is only a house. You still have your memories and you still have your family and that's all that matters.


But you want to know what the best part of renting is? All that crap? That crap that you had to pay for and fix yourself? Not. Your. Problem. Any. More. Water heater goes? Not your problem. Roof leaks? Not your problem. Need a new toilet? NOT YOUR PROBLEM.

I had a falling down house, full of mold and mildew and rotting sills and the whole nine yards and the relief I felt at moving into a place where all that crap was no longer on my shoulders was incredibly freeing.

Sandy :) said...

I'm proud of all of you. I love those kids with all my heart and you know what George? They are blessed to have such wonderful parents as you and Jazz...just as much as you are blessed to have those two amazing kids. Can't wait to come visit the new hacienda.

Love you lots like tater tots....