As we headed to Tallahassee with the trailer in tow, I was filled with all kinds of emotions and, I am ashamed to say, not the best of kind. I had dreaded the final trip to our home town to finalize the selling of our home for some time, and now the day had arrived. I was so foul I was sick of myself, so I am sure Kenny had tired of me also. I just could not seem to get a grip on my emotions. Yeah, I make all these proclamations I will not allow my emotions to control to me, my circumstances will not control my life, I am in control of them not them in control of me, bla, bla, bla, but, this day, this week, this month it seems, that was a bunch of hog wash! I just can't get a grip on them. I can't get a hold on where I need to take my energy and make it the most effective, a talent I am so good at, at least for most of my life. It has always been one of my greatest gifts, seeing whats ahead zooming in on that goal and pushing through no matter what is thrown at me. The past few months I have been going through the motions and doing what is expected, yet inside I feel as though I could lose it at any moment. So much has been lost, so many changes, so many stresses, I feel like my body physically any moment might just shut down in a defense mode. And my mind, at times feels like it could implode at any moment. So I live with moment to moment levels of stress that I know we were not meant to function at. When you live with the uncertainly of no home, no job, the variables are so astronomical you could drive yourself crazy trying to cover all the angles. And we as women like to know what we can count on, what we can see, and our life the past 3 years has been basically like navigating a ship in the complete dark without any help but the steering thingy?. So you just never know where you will wind up next week. Where the next blow is coming from. So you never really have a sense of sitting and having that sigh of relief, it is always in the back of your mind, what is going to happen next?! Where is the next punch in the gut coming from. The issues we have faced have not been light hearted things, things I use to find monumental now seem like nothing. Life has, living, has, become a daily walk, no more planning for the future, and to be honest I don't look past the week. A commitment to a 30 year mortgage use to be a norm, a way of life for us, a place I envisioned seeing my kids grow up, but as this country faces unemployment, a bursting deficit and as we face our life changes, it is apparent we will have to rethink our life, our daily thought process..... our trust, who do we really trust our future with? As I rode in that Bronco to Tallahassee to sign the final papers (we had finally sold our home, what is called a short sale) I could feel my emotions boil to the top and simmer to the edge and at any moment they will explode. I had no idea how surprised I would be. I kept telling myself that at least I would have closure, I would have something solid to build on, we wouldn't have that hanging over our head. And as friends and family used all the familiar phrases and tried to console me as best they could, I knew in my heart it was going to be a moment I would never forget. I would remember the room, the men in the room, the smell of the room, the pen I used, the tears that blurred my signature as I signed Angela Marie Dyer on the line. The date, the time of day, the moment it was final. We left central Florida at 4:30 in the morning my dear friend had offered to do my hair at her expense, which was a wonderful gift! A gift worth about $250.00. So as we traveled in the wee hours of the morning I thought of all the memories and all the times God had shown up and helped our family. The excitement I felt the first time I walked into my house, my mind running wild with ideas of all the things I would do once it was mine. The first thing I would do is buy the longest and biggest table I could find, as I stood in the foyer I made God a commitment that I would open my home to anyone in need. That table would be full of people talking and sharing their lives, sharing my families life. But, how had my families life somehow been abandoned, or so it felt. Now my large table sits with the leafs in storage. I had done my part, spent hours upon hours, and hundreds of dollars preparing, cooking for and loving people, in that very home, I had kept my end of the bargain but, this morning I felt forsaken, deserted, empty, alone. I arrived at the salon, genuinely so happy to see everyone. It felt so good to be in a familiar place, like I was somebody again, like I had something, not like I was dependant on someone else, less of a human because I have no money, but I felt normal again. I had dressed like I had always dressed in the past, to please myself, I was feeling good, no worries. Even had my stilettos on! I was served my hot tea, given a hot towel to my neck infused with essential oils a lap full of magazines and left to myself! Little did I know the shock that lay ahead of me at 2:00. Kenny's Mom picked him up and drove him to the attorneys office and I met them their in my Bronco in somewhat of a state of denial feeling really HOT!! My hair was amazing I was driving an amazing truck and I had my typical 4' stelolttlos on! If you know me, that is my standard dress, the one I might get up and chose to wear to Walmart! So we get to the attorney's office we make introductions and we sit. Everyone is chatty and polite, very chipper. I am handed the papers to sign my name and I am signing away, my signature here, my initial there and suddenly my eyes are focused on the amount the gentleman bought my house for. I feel a lump forming in my throat my eyes begin to burn and fill with tears, I glance at Kenny and he instantly can sense something is wrong. As the tears form, the anger, the bitterness, well.....the quick temper supersedes the hurt and I, in a moment, envision myself getting up, lunging across the table, snatching that poor lil man up and jacking him right in the jaw, then throwing him to the floor and choking him. My stilettos high in the air! And then the attorney was next on my agenda. I just kinda shook my head to get my senses, I could just see the Tallahassee Democrat headlines, "Crazy women arrested for attacking men in attorneys office." And you can bet the attorney would sue! As I finished my part of the signing I left and told Kenny to ride with his Mom I needed a moment, I needed to collect myself, to get a grip, I had 2 more days in Tallahassee and I had to either bury these issue and address them later or address them now and be done with them. And I knew that God had brought me through too many difficult things in my life for a purpose, not to lose my mind now. That was the tread I was holding on to. Trust me the only one I had left. God I have not gone through this, my family has not gone through this without a purpose, our life has a purpose, a destiny, the pain has not been for nothing. Our family has gone through a war and though we are beaten and war torn, limping, feeling like we were dragging our limbs at times, we are intact, no we are stronger for the journey, our love is stronger, our bond is stronger, our faith is stronger, OUR FAMILY IS STRONGER! As I was talking to myself like a "crazy" person, I felt a different kind of pain, the pain of seeing Emma taken off in a police car, the pain of almost seeing Isabella die in my arms, or the look of humiliation on my sons face after he had been terrorized and bullied, or Coleman head hanging, tears streaming down, hiding behind his hair because he couldn't read as kids laughed. The pain of being gouged by greedy people over my home, which is just a thing, a place to put other things, seemed to get less and less. The thought of my four children lined up back in that lil trailer we now call home, even Emma safe,and sound asleep in the livingroom like a hunting camp, pleased as punch. Nights I would lay awake in prayer and abject fear for her safety. No anger in those kids or bitterness because their rooms are still unfinished, they just jump in ,Wyatt on the X-box, Emma chatting away on her phone while also on her Mac, while Bella and Cole are watching cartoons. A lil friend stopped by and said wow, what a cool room, it's like a big cool game room with beds! A great big slumber party! The entire living room wall is lined up with gadgets, the flat screen on the left, Wyatts X-box and tv in the middle, his computer and computer screen on the right, and their beds have full view of it all!! Adults can be so stupid sometimes, Me included! You know the old timers their babies slept with the Mama til the next one came along and then that child joined their siblings, and it made the most secure children, and the older siblings shared bedrooms as well. Homes were built around the kitchens, where family congregated and visited, bedrooms where for sleeping, not for isolation. My Mom has the best memories of rooming with her sisters. It creates closeness and intimacies, so many of our families are off in other rooms in front of tvs or behind computers and are very rarely in the same room with each other. To my shame, my family included. Our situation had forced us to be in the one room, and I am grateful for that. We think we have made so much progress and we are so much smarter than our ancestors, technology has given us so many amenities, but it has also taken so much from us. From our families. So here is what I always come back to, no matter how angry, how bitter, how ugly, how confused, or hurt, or moments when I dont understand why things happen, my life always comes back to this, moments of humility, moments of clarity Isaiah 54:14.. I (God) will cause your children to be in great peace, and you shall be built in righteousness: abstain from injustice, and you shall not fear; and trembling shall not come close to you. Behold STRANGERS shall come to you by Me (God) and shall join to you for refuge. I created you not as a copper smith blowing coals, and bringing out a vessel fit for work; but I have created you, not for ruin, that I (God) should destroy you. I (God) will not allow any weapon (devised schemes) formed or planned against you to prosper. And every voice that should raise up against you for destruction will be vanquished. There is an inheritance for those who serve the Lord and you will be righteous before the Lord. The paraphrase was loose, and if you are somewhat of a cynic it will be little more than a spot of Ole English for you, but as I read that I am aware that as the copper smith blowing coals blows away in the wind and the debris is of no value or is un-noticed to anyone I am keenly aware that God is not taken by surprise by my life. Every little detail He saw before He formed the earth. Nothing in my life is trash or unused debris, He uses everything in my life, every high point, every tragedy, every mistake I make or will ever make, every hurt, every moment, just like this very moment in Tallahassee, Florida He will bring someone to me who needs refuge and allow me to do for them what He has done for me, remind them of their absolute and unequivocal importance to Him! Life is not always just about us and the moment we live in, but it is about what we do with that moment, what character we show in that moment, are we willing to expose ourselves to strangers and share our lives and be a refuge for the hurting? I have to believe "yes', in my own life, I have been called to share my story to the broken in heart, that God does see, not only does He see, but His pain in seeing was so great that He joined in the pain with us, He provided, at great harm to Himself, the suffering and destruction of His child, His only-born, to free us from the such deep wounds. Strange how life can come to be so re-defined in such unexpected Ways!!!