I had the idea last night, and it came to me when Max and I pulled up in the driveway after his gifted program’s parent night. We’d played with logic puzzles and watched videos the kids had made, taken tests online to measure intelligence, and looked at posters and work until we couldn’t see straight.
We pulled into the driveway, opened the garage, and there stood my husband, fully clothed and waiting at the door. Since I’d left him playing video games in shorts and a tshirt, this made little sense to me. I sent Max inside and asked my lurking-by-the-door husband what his deal was.
“I just got fired.”
The words were simple and to the point, and he wasted no time drawing out the dramatics, but I felt slapped in the face. That’s when the brilliant post idea came to me (and that’s how my mind works, I compose things during crucial moments in my life) – it would be perfect. Intriguing.
“Liveblogging a Heartbreak.”
So what if it’s been done, this was MY heartbreak. MY family.
We moved four hours away from our home. Our lives. We uprooted the kids and put them into a new situation with people they didn’t know (granted, the school was/is phenomenal and they have loved every minute of it), we put OURSELVES into a new situation with people we didn’t know.
We trusted promises that were given to us, and why shouldn’t we have? They were given by people who wore collars and were well touted. We trusted the reputation of the clothing they wore, the titles they bore, and the smiles they offered.
When it didn’t match up later on, we convinced ourselves things would be okay. It was God’s “test” for us, but we were here and we were following his plan.
We thought we would be guided, watched over. We had trusted our entire lives to this one decision and while no one expected things to be perfect – they never are – we expected, well, something.
A hand reached out in friendship. A “can I help?” email. A housewarming gift, just as a sign of “we’re glad you’re here”.
When none of that came, I convinced myself I had expectations higher than I should have had. I decided we couldn’t expect that much from a crowd of almost 2,000 churchgoers who, after all, led busy metropolitan lives.
As the weeks went on, I realized the coldness wasn’t just in the people. It was in the whole schebang. The priests who had been so warm and welcoming became less so and once, in a fit of desperate need (for what? I don’t know. An ear to listen? Someone who cared? Surely a PRIEST has to care, that’s in the job description, right?) I emailed one of the priests as just what I was – a lonely, desperate parishioner in need of a caring ear.
I was told that she was busy, that she would respond ASAP. It’s been months, and I never heard a word again.
I was so lonely. So many nights I was so very, very lonely. I told myself this was all working for the greater good – that we had moved here for Josh’s dream and his calling of working with youth, and that if nothing else, he was doing that and doing it smashingly well. Kids were texting him, stopping him at ballgames, wanting to hang out with him – and he was doing the best he could at what he does best.
But it wasn’t enough that Josh was establishing real, growing relationships with kids who needed someone to look to. His hours, days by day, had to be accounted for. If he went to the doctor he was questioned and told he “didn’t have time” to be sick. He had to email an account, every day, of exactly what he’d done that day. No one cared about real conversations with teenagers about God and their spirituality – just as long as there were an impressive number of butts in seats on any given gathering night.
It broke Josh’s heart. But he pressed on. He pressed on because he knew that if he didn’t try, then there would be no one left who really wanted to guide these kids (outside of their parents). No one who gave a shit about them besides keeping them around long enough to start writing pledge checks to the church.
I believed in everything he was doing. So I supported him the best way I knew how.
Even last night, because I knew that he had done everything he could.
And now, with his face defeated and a new little life kicking inside me, I don’t know what else to do. I don’t know where my hope is. I don’t know how to do the things that have to be done now.
All I know is I still believe good things are possible. Somehow. Maybe.