There is no good place to start.
Let me sum up.
For a long time it felt like we had been forsaken.
For a long time it felt like we had been left alone.
For a long time I had to force myself from fear to faith, at first at the start of every day, and then at the start of every hour, and towards the end at the start of nearly every other minute.
But then, just at the moment of great alarm, salvation arrived.
Last Monday, David dressed in his new shirt and tie and drove to a new hospital and started his new job. That same morning, after I ironed his shirt and kissed him goodbye, I met the moving trucks at our new place and started the overwhelming job of setting up house.
Savannah says that's my new favorite word. Overwhelmed. I said, "What do you mean?" "Well, now you say it all the time."
The other day we had a family meeting. I tried to tell the kids how I was feeling. I told them it was like I was digging out from a mudslide while it was still raining. Ethan looked outside. To see if it was raining.
So, we are starting over. New job. New house. New ward. New friends. New schools. New streets and grocery stores and doctors and gas stations and banks and post offices and when I drive down the street I don't know what's going to be on the next corner. I've been to the grocery store twice and got lost coming home both times.
It won't take long I tell myself.
What's not new? The weather. After all those plane flights and hotels and tempting views of some gorgeous eastern rivers, the place prepared for us was on the other side of the valley. Just an hour up the road. No one was more surprised than I. And I wonder when I will learn that I am not in charge.
For the record, there are joys to this new life. My favorite: that particular joy of greeting your husband at the end of the day. I'm in the kitchen starting dinner. He walks in in his shirt and tie. Hey you. And then a little passionate necking. (This never gets old.)
And what I think about most as I sort and unpack and hang and rearrange, is how Sariah made a home out of a tent and how when she was unpacking carpets and dishes and liahonas out in the desert she might have used that word "overwhelmed" too. And how even though it might not make much sense to me now, the Lord knows what he is doing. He has a plan.
Even in the middle of the desert.