Stress? What stress?
Luck is a funny thing. I've been thinking of it that way--as a string of bad luck. A month or so before we left, on a picnic at the park, Sam found a five-leaf clover. He wasn't trying to find it. We were in the middle of a stressy conversation about money, and he looked down, and there it was.
|Our Clover, pressed and preserved in a book about Paris gargoyles.|
I did a quick Google search to see if five leaf clovers are good luck, or if it must be four, and Google said they were even rarer, and therefore luckier. We're not people particularly prone to symbols of this kind, but it seemed hard to ignore. Our stressful conversation dissipated. We finished our dinner, laughing at Henrietta's enthusiastic crawling and interest in the grass, and went home hopeful.
We've tried to stay hopeful, tried to think things will work out, but it's difficult. Sam sometimes thinks we've just made a mistake, that we shouldn't have made the leap, but I had such an unmistakable impression that we were supposed to come that I don't usually think that. Don't get me wrong, I'm terrible to live with right now. I alternate between hopeful and happy, when I can muster my internal and spiritual resources, and sad and pouty and catatonic and downright mean, when I can't. We've had the worst fights of our marriage in the last few weeks, our relationship buckling under the pressure. But still, when I think about our situation, I'm certain things will settle out somehow.
We're learning patience, here. A slow, plodding, endurance sort of patience. I'm remembering how important diligent spiritual practices (prayer, study) are to my sanity. We're learning what is essential and what is not, and what becomes unessential when it has to be. We're living monastically, sometimes not leaving Sam's mother's house for days, trying to finish writing our books and hammering out the freelance work we can get, and passing Henrietta back and forth and following her around while she laughs at the cats and claps her hands, practicing her new walking skills. We've zeroed out our expectations for our futures and our careers, rethinking everything, imagining new business ideas and going back to school and applying for various jobs and whatever else we care to think of, as seriously or unseriously as we're inclined, because there's nothing we have firmly in mind to do next.
I'm worried. I really am. But underneath all of that worry, I'm thinking and hoping that this is the sort of drastic life change that is bound to lead to a breakthrough. Something new is coming, as we muck around in our unlucky situation, trying somehow to manufacture our own luck. I don't know what the something is, but I'm sure enough that it's on its way.