This week I killed a giant spider that was chasing me (yes, it was actually chasing me!). I set up my new espresso machine and learned to make coffee. I went to Zumba class that was held at a pole dancing studio (yes, uncoordinated me – and no, there was no pole dancing involved) and did not die. I got a job at an inpatient hospice facility. And as of this morning, I’ve lost over 14 lbs since the beginning of July – the lowest weight I’ve been in 5 months. It’s kind of silly, but these seemingly meaningless and random events are a signpost to me that I’m walking the right path. It speaks to where I’ve come from and where I’m going, and how I’m beginning to live out this season’s mantra: DARE TO BE AWKWARD AND UNCOMFORTABLE. Because it is in those moments that growth begins. I really believe that everything will be okay.
I’ve been in Louisville for over a month now. There have been a lot of ups and downs. Weekly, daily, sometimes hourly. But this week I believe I’ve reached a turn in the path, and I’m starting to see why I’m here. Each of the small things have led me to a new place, a good place. I’m beginning to see why God brought me here.
The stepping stones along this path are many.
The first was my two sweet neighbors, the former owners of my house who now live two doors down. When we arrived at our new home, there was a welcome gift at the door. A couple of days after we arrived and were still unpacking, there was a tornado warning. As the storm blew in and Craig was at work, I was very nervous. My lovely, kind neighbor called to make sure I was okay, let me know what to expect, and offer for me to come to her house for safety if needed. Luckily the storm passed and all was fine, but what a wonderful gift to have someone care and check in.
The next stepping stone was my husband’s new work family. They have been so welcoming – inviting us to dinner and other activities. It’s been great to be able to ask someone about simple things such as where to shop.
The next stepping stone was a surprise to me. The closest grocery store to me is a small Kroger’s, which is apparently also known to locals as “Dirty Kroger’s”. Although our neighborhood in Clifton had gone downhill years ago, but it’s been lovingly and beautifully restored in many areas. The crowd shopping at Kroger’s is a random mix of all walks of life at any given point during the day. You might find people dressed in their Sunday best after church, or health professionals stopping after their shift at work. You can find moms shopping with their kids, to teens straight from the basketball court at park at the end of my street, to the man in a button shirt wearing no pants, only boxers, who followed me through the produce section. But any time, any day, you will find kind and friendly employees who are super helpful, even if they chuckle and joke with me about how many times I walk back to the same aisle in half an hour. (“Are you SURE I can’t help you find something?”). Just shopping in my own neighborhood and finding a smile and a bit of kindness has helped me feel a little more at home in my new home. And so I’ve renamed Dirty Kroger’s – in our home, it is now called Lovely Kroger’s.
The last and most solid stepping stone on this new path is the new community I’ve found – a group of diverse women who are united by one goal – to get healthy. This group deserves a post all on its own, but for now I’ll say that I’ve been lucky to find a group of women to exercise with that are brave, strong, determined, and so incredibly supportive. And they LOVE Jesus, yes they do!
It’s a great thing to begin to have some clarity on this new path. I think things are going to be okay. Even better than okay.