Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Keep moving forward

The rain has been coming down in sheets all morning and afternoon. It's been like that all summer long. Odd, really. Summer in Savannah is supposed to be all oppressive heat and searing sunlight.

Not this year. This year it's been different.

Fitting. This year my life has been different.

One year ago, yesterday to be exact, I got a phone call that changed our lives. I told the biggest lie of my life and - whoosh! - we sold almost everything we owned, found a place to live, and moved in three weeks time to a city that captured our hearts ten years ago.

A city we've been wanting to move to for those ten years.

But, of course, it didn't go the way we planned. I honestly don't believe that things ever do.

The thing is, change is hard. Most of the time, it sucks. It comes at you - wham, BAM! - like a comic book fist and all you can do is block the blows, hope the assault ends soon. All I ever want to do is bury my head in the sand and wait for it to blow over, take the storm clouds with it.

Change, it seems, likes to hover about until you take notice of it. It hovers good and long like fog on the marsh. Thick, white, can't-see-your-hand-in-front-of-your-face.

One year and I'm still having a hard time seeing my hand in front of my face. Every now and then, however, I get glimmers of black water when the marsh clouds shift. In the reflections I discover job changes, novels coming together, and an assemblage of creative ideas long buried under pounds of sludge.

Despite these small rays of hope, there have been times I've wanted to pack it all in and go back. The only thing that gives me any consolation that we're here and we're RIGHT is my husbands job. It's perfect, he's happy, and that's a first in 11 years! That (and only that at times) is the only thing keeping me clinging on.

But here's the thing: even if that wasn't a major factor, there really is no going back. Sometimes doors are closed and no amount of banging or prying can get it open again. Truth is, I wouldn't want it to open. Going back can be good. If you need to make things right with a loved one or friend it's important to find your way back. Even if it's just for your own peace of mind. However, most of the time we have to keep going forward, even if it seems we're moving backwards.

Sometimes, especially when it seems we're moving backwards.

C.S. Lewis once said that sometimes a person has to take steps backwards in order to get back on the right path. In other words, if you are a mile down Path B but you really needed to go down Path A, you'll have to go backwards for a while in order to move forward. The truth, however, isn't that you're moving backwards at all. You're moving to the right path which will move you further in the direction you need to go.

Aim. Pull back the bow and shoot. If you miss, don't walk away. Go fetch the arrow. See where it landed. You may only need to look a bit further over another hill or bush to find the path you need. Or you may have to backtrack a bit to find it. Regardless, never, ever GO BACK. Move on, with purpose.

You'll make it.

And so will I.


  1. Yes Jen, C S Lewis was right. There is no going back. Yes, change is hard, but it means you're moving on, accepting challenges. It's great that your husband is happy. That's so important! I'm sure you'll settle and move right on! :-)

  2. I hope you do make it and find the right path. You are in Savannah for a reason. And if your husband is really happy there, that might be the reason.

  3. Denise: Thank you very much for the encouragement. I know we're in the right place. The transition has taken much, much longer than either of us hoped. It is a challenge but I know we're up for it!

    Alex: Thank you! Yes, we are here for a reason and I am beyond happy my husband is FINALLY happy with his job. It has been eleven LONG years of prayers and tears and I couldn't be happier for him.


Well, hello! I'm so glad you made it. Come inside and sit by the hearth. I'll take your coat and hat. The kettle is singing and there's cake and candles and good conversation. Settle in and make yourself at home. Don't mind the wolfhounds; they're friendly if you give them a bit of lemon curd.