This was our front yard for a few days.
We checked in to the Motel 6 along the estuary. Our room opened right onto the pier you see in the center of the picture. Xena relaxed in a way I hadn't seen in months or even years. I really don't know why she won't do things like take herself down to the water on her own, but that's just how it is. She took that little bit of grace and found a way to exploit... never mind, that's not my story, so I can't tell it. What I can write is that I sometimes feel like an ass, and I worry that this entire exercise is a response to a hidden attitude that as long as she's going to work herself to death, I might as well make sure the rest of us are benefitting from it. I don't know... looking for hidden motivations in other people is hard, and in myself even harder. I start imagining the worst about me instead of the best.
My children are discovering that being without a home doesn't mean we are not a family. It seems sort of obvious, but stripped of "place," we are seeing how much of our lives revolved around relating to the space we lived in, and how little of it revolved around concern for each other. Nick continues to look better and better, and Caitlan continues to mellow. I watched the two of them play together in the motel's pool, laughing and splashing, releasing a bit of worry for a time.
I am learning how to consider their needs and make flexible plans. For instance, we bought a couple of bags of non-refrigerated, zero-prep groceries (bananas, oranges, food bars, juice boxes) so the children could forage while Xena and I worked. Then I brought in a meager range of $1 items from El Pollo Loco and we had "dinner." Nick told me I'd brought home "just the right amount" of dinner, and I suddenly realized his satisfaction came from the ritual of sitting together and eating something hot, not the quantity of food offered.
This morning we packed up and moved out again. I've begun to find the weekly rate motels in the area. One of them, the Alameda Islander, is super convenient but rumors caused me to check with the police. I was told very bluntly that if I had any other options I should exercise them. "It's a cesspool of humanity. We're there every night. If you care about your family, don't go there."
Meanwhile, business is picking up at an alarming rate. Let's see, how do I put this? Many of us have a dualistic relationship with God, and in fact Jesus told us to call Him "Father." Our Father has made many, many covenants with us, collectively and individually. I cannot escape the feeling that what is going on in my life right now is part of a realization of a covenant, one that is personal and intimate. Specifically, I feel as though God is promising me abundance in the coming months, so that I can follow His will for me and lead my family into a massive transformation.
It has little or nothing to do with buying a house, you see. That's merely the part that I can grasp at the current time. It has everything to do with showing up, being alert, loving my family individually and collectively, and being in the process without being attached to an outcome. The outcome isn't mine, you see. It's His. If it looks one way, I'll understand it better, and if it looks another way, it might be for a greater good that I cannot comprehend, now, soon, or ever.
I trust Him. He's never let me down. I'm able to say "yes" in a way that I've never been able to until now.
I say "yes."