I’ve been wanting to elaborate on my no good, horrible, very bad day last Monday. But it’s taken me over a week to recover and come to my senses about it.
Long story short, we didn’t get the house.
Not because it wasn’t perfect in almost every way (the bathroom could have used a makeover) but because we had some serious communication issues with the company renting it to us. And because maybe, just maybe, it was never meant to be in the first place and… I jumped the gun.
Do you ever do that? Jump into something that feels so right, even though deep, deep, WAY deep down inside there is the little voice whispering that maybe it’s not as right as you want it to be? But you brush the voice out of the way. Keep positive. Look at all the wonderful things. Ignore all the signs. And push your way forward anyways?
I’m afraid I did that. And now I get to “eat crow” as the old timers would say.
But hindsight is 20/20. In the middle of it, everything seemed very right. Yet, looking back, something always seemed off about the woman we were working with. From the very first moments of our interaction, things were weird. To make a long story very, VERY short we never ever felt that she wanted to rent us this house. We had to push to make every step happen. It was frustrating and we tried to give her the benefit of the doubt. We tried to make the best of it. We thought if we just got into the house, then we wouldn’t have to work with these people anymore.
However, when we went in to sign the lease and nobody was there to meet us. And she denied ever making that appointment. And no one in the office knew what was going on. Our suspicions were realized that his probably was not the best relationship for us to be in.
Then, when she didn’t call us for two days to reschedule (not surprising), my husband made the executive decision for our family that it was not in our best interest to work with this company anymore.
It was my job to call and break it off… two days before we were to get the keys.
I don’t say “no” well. I don’t confront well. I don’t do anything well that involves making someone mad at me or hate me or think poorly of me or talk about me after they hang up the phone. If I had called, all of my feelings of anger and frustration and hurt with the way things had gone would have gone unsaid and this woman probably would have shamed me into giving it another chance. Fuming as I was, I don’t think I could have expressed honestly and constructively how much she had botched this deal (and crushed my hope of renting this cute little home).
I hate that I’m like this.
That I can’t truly speak my mind even if the situation desperately needs it.
I hate that I would rather suffer under the mistreatment of others, than speak up and risk ruining a relationship. Ouch.
So all this turmoil and all this anxiety was churning inside of me from the minute I woke up that morning. Which was why everything my little girl did that morning rubbed me the wrong way. Which is why I almost started a fight with my husband just as he was about to walk out the door. Which is why I jumped the gun trying to cross the highway and almost got us killed.
But we survived… the deal was cancelled with minimal losses. We don’t have to work with this company anymore (and hopefully never will again). And here from our cozy little two-bedroom apartment in a beautiful, secluded, wooded neighborhood that I have loved for over two years, I can see the lessons I learned from this mess I got us in.
I learned that it’s ok for things to not work out. (There are a select few things that you MUST work out no matter what… but this was not one of them) It’s not the end of the world. We tried. There were a million positive things about the house and some lucky couple is going to get a steal. But for us, it didn’t work out. And that’s ok.
I learned that my fear of people is still very much alive and very much needs to be addressed… every day. It’s a problem that I faced up to several years ago, but clearly have not worked very hard to deal with. But it’s also a problem that will not just disappear, as I had secretly hoped. We all have weaknesses. We all have demons deep down inside. And the battle will not stop until we enter Glory. I can either ignore the issue and, as witnessed here, fall apart when faced with my fears. Or I can be diligent in prayer and choose to battle it every day so the next time I am faced with confrontation or constructive criticism or saying “no” my whole day won’t crumble before me.
I learned that God has blessed me with the best husband ever. It was his busiest day in a very long time. He had just moved into a new role in his job. It was the busiest day of the whole month. But when I needed him to step in and do this for me, he immediately took care of it. He is not like me. He is not afraid to confront people when they have acted unreasonably. He was not afraid to call that office and lovingly but firmly tell them that we no longer wanted to work with them. And in that moment, I knew that this was the man I had chosen to love, cherish, submit to, and follow for the rest of my life. The yin to my crazy, messed up, dysfunctional yang. And I was so thankful.
I learned that God has also surrounded me with the most beautiful friends and coworkers. Understanding. Encouraging. There for me when I needed to just break down. I went on to work that day… sobbing and shaking from our near miss on the highway. Angry at how I had let this affect me so deeply. Wallowing in self-pity that my husband was incredibly busy and couldn’t answer the phone when I called him. But I walk into the church where I teach twice a week and suddenly I’m surrounded by caring women who listen, encourage, pray and comfort. Who else has a job like that?! Priceless.
This experience has been bittersweet. Admitting that I caused much of it by forcing my own desires. Accepting that sometimes it’s ok and better and healthier to just say no. Anticipating what God has prepared for our future… really. Truly. Not just what I have in my head.
And maybe next time it will be right.
And we really will just know.
What have been some of your hardest life lessons? What ridiculous lengths did God have to go to in order to get you to stop and turn around? What “unanswered prayers” are you thankful for today?