Getting A Texas Education: Lesson 2

Not all of my education in Texas has to do with being in Texas. Some things just have to do with moving; taking an unplanned, somewhat risky journey.

Christmas Eve started a long ride on an errant, emotional Ferris Wheel. I had a bone graft done on my big toe. It hurt. The pain was held at bay by morphine briefly, then by codeine, and lastly, rather ineffectively by ibuprofen or, more effectively with the occasional shot of scotch when I was blessed by family and friends. As I’m writing this, it’s August. Seven months out and my big toe is still a huge pain.

In January, three weeks into recovery, Steve was laid-off. That call left us both in a jumble of emotions, relief, anger, fear, frustration, and grief. The job that was potentially an incredible blessing for so many, turned months of dreams and effort to vapor. We were devastated.

The home we built for me to breathe safely, my haven, had to be sold. The Ferris Wheel began to twist from left to right while still going round. Rising up to see a bright future before falling back into the foggy unknown. I became nauseous. I wanted off.

As days became weeks and then months, no one seemed to want our beautiful home. I saw the foggy bottom of that ride much more than the view from the top, and the infernal thing just kept twisting. Finally during the same week we received an offer for the house, we got a job offer – in Texas. While still going round and round, twisting from left to right, the Ferris Wheel started spinning me in summersaults.

Here we are, months since getting on that nauseating ride and life in Texas is a reality. It’s very pretty here in east Texas. Our oldest son and his family are only three hours away and that’s wonderful! We haven’t lived this close to them for at least 15 years. Steve has a good job with great people, and things on the church front look very promising. It’s good.

As for the mutant Ferris Wheel, it’s stopped flipping me upside down and sideways, but I’m still going round and round, although recently there seems to be more time at the top. It’s a lovely view. One of these days I’ll get back to the bottom, in the light. When the door opens and the safety bar lifts I’m looking forward to walking away, hopefully without a noticeable limp.

I’ve often said that when moving, the hardest things for a woman to replace are her church, her hairdresser and her gynecologist. I need to add one more thing to that list. Her friends.

How can I replace those intimate, amazingly wonderful women who’ve been so essential to my life? It can’t be done, but to embrace this new season of life I need new friends. Texas friends. I know there are at least two or three women in east Texas who laugh much, pray much and won’t guilt me when I have a Guinness or a single malt. (I may have been a Baptist for the past 21 years, but I have strong Lutheran roots.) It’s time to start looking.

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