July 26, 2011

1145 Miles, 180 days...

1145 Driving Miles.

A span of 5 states.

Approximately 180 days.

Which rounds out to 6 months.

Departure Date: Saturday, July 30th

Return Date: Unknown

Things that will take place during the lapse in time: Tink's 3rd birthday party, Tink's 1st day of preschool, Sassy's 1st day of Kindergarten, Tink's 3rd birthday, fall soccer, Tink's 1st dance class, Walter's Pumpkin Patch, apple picking, annual trip to Topeka for PLC, photos at the governor's mansion, and a trip to the KC Ren Fest, Halloween, all things Thanksgiving, all things Christmas, holiday baking, the need to shovel the driveway, cold toes and warm hearts, lots and lots of growth, lots and lots of memories, events unforeseen.

So, I'm sure many of you are wondering what this is all about. Well, in short, there are some major changes coming up for certain members of the SPH.

Specifically, Tyler has taken a 6-month contract position as a design engineer for Honda Jet... in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Contracting is a risky business. There are no guarantees. Well, there are never any guarantees, but that is especially true with contract positions.

We have assessed the pros and cons, ins and outs, and ups and downs of this situation to excess, and have decided that this is the best course for our family at this time. We have lots and lots of reasons for that, which I do not need to bore you all with, but mostly we are hoping this provides us an opportunity to begin digging ourselves out of a massive, expansive crater of student loan debt, intermingled with some other acquired debt, and allow us to breathe a little easier.

Which, my friends, does not come at zero expense.

For the past few weeks, as we've weighed both sides of this decision, one of the local churches has had the following on their billboard: Salvation is free, but it isn't cheap. While I obviously understand the religious implication of the true intended meaning of the sign, it's also struck another chord with me.

An obvious first step in the job-search progression is to look at the bottom dollar. Here is where we are now, here is where we want to be, and will this help us get there?

Easy enough, right?

Well, then please tell me how you put a value on memories? Time? Emotions? Because I'm rendered helpless and without logical explanation here. It may be a free maneuver, but it's costing us a heckuva lot.

That list I made earlier- all things that Tyler will miss in our lives. Things, all important to us, that the girls will have to experience without their Daddy by their sides. How do you make that choice willingly?

We were not forced into this situation. Tyler's current job, to the best of our knowledge, was not at stake. He was not activated to make this move. He was not deployed. It was a choice.

And we made it.

Deep breath.

While I've known about this for a couple of weeks now, and our family and close friends already know, it's been exceedingly difficult to write it all out. Maybe that's because it comes with a sense of finality- of putting it all out there. Maybe it's because it's forcing me to process through a lot of really hard feelings. I don't know.

But the fact remains- Tyler is days away from leaving.

I am completely overwhelmed right now. Part of me wants to check off as many of the 4,792 things I would like to get accomplished before he leaves. Part of me wants to turn my head to all responsibility this week and relish in the time we have left as "the four of us". Part of me wants to retreat to my bed, pull the covers over my head, and hibernate for six months until it's all over.

None of the three options are very realistic.

I'm sure I'll have much more to say and to share on the topic as time progresses and I continue to plan and to process.

For now, this is all I have.

And, one thing is for certain... I am pretty confident that I will be turning to all you lovelies for support in the coming days and weeks and months.

Thanks in advance.

3 sweet tweets:

Sarah said...

Sometimes it is SO HARD to decide exactly what is ultimately the very best thing to do for your family. You made the decisions for the right reasons, your family, and that's the best that you can do. Good luck to your family!!!

Sherry said...

Oh man, 6 months....ugh! I've got my fingers crossed that there will be plenty of little visits throughout that 6 months though!

Anonymous said...

Heather you write all your thoughts and emotions so well and vividly. It breaks my heart for you that Tyler will miss all those memories that you listed. But it sounds like you both put a lot of thinking into this decision and that this is the best decision, at this time, for you guys. It will be hard but you have your parents here and lots of friends to help you through it. :) Take lots of pictures these last few days (I'm sure I don't need to tell you that.) Maybe you can get Tyler to do some short videos that you can record for messages for the girls. Like maybe goodnight messages they could watch. Take care. We will be thinking of you! - Robyn