It’s almost a year ago now that I logged my first post on bh.

Less than 365 days ago, my ecstatic children were blitzed out on cheese balls and body surfed Virginia Beach whitecaps. We huddled together in a sleazy ocean front motel like it was Cinderella’s castle as happy there together as a honeymoon couple and completely inoculated by the joy of possibilities.

We were at the beach, baby, and no amount of sand or windburn could dampen the elation housed in that little Eco-Lounge den. I can remember the discovery of unexpected secrets about my children there, and how when Far Far Away together they were more unified as friends and confidants. As I reported then, there’s little privacy when six family members share one hotel room.

July abdicated to August this past Saturday night and found us in another cheap hotel room together for an entirely new purpose, this time a Holiday Inn chosen because its chain welcomes pets, and of course, our two cats were part of the caravan from Here to There.

That was the day that we began the journey of God’s new call on our lives in the Land of Citrus.

As many of you know, this new beginning seasoned in the barrel of dense family process before it decanted action.  The cup now poured has begun to breathe.

Insomnia courted me again that night we reached the Holiday Inn closest to the midpoint of the journey like a jealous lover. I was its captive date among the sleeping noises of my beloved family. Once again, I learned many things about them in the room that night as the cats marched likes grunts on a hostile recon mission.

The Baby whistled in her sleep, a breathy percussion like a locomotive puffing up mountainous tracks. She stirred and tossed her head as she played the scales of her dream engine like a child at violin practice. Her baby face painted a portrait of innocence on her pillow case canvas. When did she get so tall and lean? Her coltish legs, brown and bruised, were tawny from swimming and tag. Even in the still of sleep, she looked ready to leap.

Unbeknownst to The Boy, he terrorized his nocturnal feline. Every time his beloved River returned to his corner of the room for comfort or in hope of a pat, he growled a ruffle-bumble that snorted like an irritated horse. This scared and confused his cat at every checkpoint, and once she jumped back in such outraged, feline surprise that I had to muffle my laughter with the pillow. I often forget that The Boy is now man-big and he often scares me when I catch his stranger profile in the room with me. That night, my terror was complete as his baritone clearly proclaimed, “I have to move to our new home…!”

I’m still not sure who he was talking to as he hibernated, but he was as earnest as Hemingway and sounded ready to run with the bulls.

The Oldest Girl talks in her sleep. As I prayed for her, I watched her eyes pace back and forth, her closed lids like sentinels on a wall. At one point, she sat straight up in bed with her right arm extended as if in praise and said, “Please!”

Whom did she petition?
I hope her prayer was answered.
I so want this heavenly girl to live happy ever after.

The Middle Girl? The Middle Girl grinds her teeth at night.

Loudly.
Often.
Ouch!

I couldn’t help but imagine the gruff grumble of Jack’s giant, “Fee-fi-fo-fum! I smell the blood of an Englishman! 
Be he alive, or be he dead, 
I’ll grind his bones to make my bread!”

The Middle Girl internalizes her experience. I pray space for her voice and truth through this transition.

The Husband is silent.
A wall of comfort and provision.
Certain,
steady,
and at rest.
He is my  warm blanket and guaranteed security.

The Husband is neither surprised nor grumpy when I wake him at 3:28 a.m. to tell him, “Cant sleep, will you hold me for a little while?”

“You got me?” I ask him.

“I got you.”

“Sure?”

“I got you, baby.”

And Our Father does too.
And His plan is to prosper and not to harm us.
And it’s a good plan, not easy, but good.
And I have faith small as a mustard seed.
And I can say to Geography, “Move from here to there and it will be.”

I left one place.

I did not leave home.

I am His.
And his.
And theirs.
And yours.

I’m right here.

Love wins.

Well baby I’ve been here before
I’ve seen this room and I’ve walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew ya
I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah!