Well, wouldn't you know it? It's three a.m. and I'm wide awake again. Something about this time of night and my urge to write. I guess it's the peace and quiet. Tonight is one of those nights that I can't condense the streams of thought in my head down to one central idea that I can then write about. It's just a mixture of junk. Some call it writer's block. I call it messy thoughts. I think everyone can get into that funk at one point or another, even if you aren't a writer. I mean, don't you just have days where nothing quite makes sense? Or things happen that just make you stop and stare?
Today I got a letter in the mail from my mortgage company. They are reducing my payment by over half starting in May. I opened the letter standing by the mailbox and just stood there - I have no idea how long I stood right there in the road. Then I walked up the hill, like I've done a thousand times since I was just a little girl, and stood in the yard. (I can still hear Granny's voice telling me "run and get the mail now honey, your legs are younger than mine!") I walked in circles and wondered who I should call. News like that needs to be shared. Instead I walked in the house and sat on the couch. I'd received two packages in the mail too - but I didn't even tear into them the way I usually would. I just sat there. I felt the weight of the world slowly lift and roll off my shoulders. I took a deep breath.
The very reason I had to move my family to Maryland in cold November 2008 was because my husband lost his job and I was then working three. I couldn't work all the time and I would have had to if we didn't want to lose the house. So I had to find a job that would support us and save the house. I was lucky enough to find a job in MD that included housing and then was able to lease my house to a great family, but when the hospital unexpectedly offered me a full time position to come back to Georgia nearly a year later, I accepted. I missed that work so much I had to return to it. That's why we are now camping out in my grandmother's home until their lease is up in November. But we've been back for six months now and Hal still hasn't found a job. You can imagine that I might be going a little nuts over this.
Not anymore. I'd been speaking with the mortgage company about refinancing my loan, but since I'm not actually living in the home right now, they were reluctant to help me. But now this. I'm amazed.
Eventually I walked back out into the yard so that I could call Hal and tell him - he and Sarah were on their way back from visiting his mother. I had a blissful 9 hours of uninterrupted sleep after work last night because they weren't bumbling around making noise. We wound up talking for a half hour, both of us just stunned. I realized that we can afford to get our house back now, even without him working.
Wouldn't it be funny if, come November, I am sad to leave this little old leafy house in the country? I think I will be. Not because I like living here, but because I feel such a deep connection to my grandmother here. Sitting in the kitchen now in the dark I can almost hear her standing at the stove frying sausages or pulling bread out of the oven. I see her back in my mind's eye, her floral dress, her apron strings dangling from the knot around her waist. In the wee hours of the morning like this I imagine her lying in bed planning what she might have for breakfast, and then getting up and rattling every pot and pan she had to wake us all up! You know, about three days after we moved into the house, a letter arrived in the mailbox we'd just installed. It was addressed to her which strange since she hadn't lived here for more than ten years, and since her address had been changed long ago to reflect her move to my uncle's home where she stayed until she died. Anyway, the letter was some sort of survey for her to fill out, and folded up in the letter was a crisp new dollar bill. It was so odd - this letter with my grandmother's name on it, the dollar in my hands. It was as if she was somehow telling me to stay here and save my money -- that in the end I'd be alright. I cannot bring myself to spend that dollar - I guess that's silly, but I just can't.