Pearls in the Slime

by kelly

What a strange few days its been.

We’re still settling in to our new place.  I still can’t find most of my socks or my address cards, and I still no official place in the new house to store underwear.  But these are temporary setbacks.

In the landlord realm, we weren’t able to fill our old level of the duplex as soon as we’d hoped (meaning we have to pay TWO mortgages, not one, for two months – longer than we’d hoped).  On top of that, the upstairs tenants we DO have have gotten behind on their rent (meaning more financial squeeze for us). 

Because the upstairs tenants are related to Paul, he has bent over backwards not only to accomodate them (while keeping them on a pay-back schedule), but also to help them work on budgeting their money and yes – even learning to better balance their checkbook.  The plan now is for them to move out very soon, and, luckily, today, Paul managed to book both the upper and lower levels, so we’ll have income to cover the bills on that house as of April 1.

As if we didn’t have enough to do (I’m getting anxious about getting everything ready for the new baby, since we’ve been real low key about it so far), we left for a conference I had in New Orleans earlier this week.

The conference sessions were good, but Paul woke up with a yucky flu the day after we arrived, and healthwise, I wasn’t feeling 100%, myself.  So we ended up skipping most of the planned conference social events and resting in the hotel room, instead.  It’s not often that we are without our daughter in tow, and the quiet time was restful.  We did have one nice dinner out at a place called Mr. B’s. 

Plus, you wouldn’t believe how strange it feels to walk around the French Quarter looking so very pregnant as I do now.  I felt totally out of place, and felt like people were surprised to see someone like me there.  It was more comfortable, actually, to keep my outings there to a minimum.

One day in New Orelans, Paul and I ate lunch out a little oyster diner type place called Felix’s.  We were the ONLY ones in the place, and things in the French Quarter were quiet, quiet, quiet.  Although *I* can’t eat such things (or drink ANYTHING I saw on Bourbon Street, where our hotel was) because I’m pregnant, Paul ate a plate of HUGE raw oysters there.

And in that quiet little place, among the slimy oysters, he found a tiny pearl!

When I walked by that same oyster place a couple of days later, there was a long line of customers out the door, and every table inside was filled.  I’m not sure why it was so QUIET when we were there, at roughly the same time of day just two days before.

It was almost as if the universe knew that we needed the space to take things slow and easy.

And I take some comfort in Paul’s finding that little pearl in an oyster that day.

This is a stressful time for us – we’ve just moved, we’re still getting settled, we’re waiting for the imminent arrival of baby #2, for whom we are not quite prepared (I’m still looking in boxes for various clothes and nursing items), Paul’s getting ready to graduate law school and looking for a job, we have two mortgages (and soon, two day care bills) to pay, there are still feet (yes FEET) of snow on the ground from this miserable winter, and we’ve been passing too many colds, and worse, to each other around our house.

So that pearl, to me, was kind of a hopeful symbol.  There’s a reward buried somewhere in all of this slime.  The unsettled feeling we have right now is temporary.  I’m keeping in mind that we’re still making progress on most of our goals.  If things don’t happen as quickly as I would like them too, well, maybe I just need to be OK with that. 

And finally, to cap off a strange few days, Paul’s father was driving Emma back home to us this morning, when – very close to our house – he got into a pretty bad car accident.  The car is in very bad shape – it will probably be officially ruled “totaled” – but luckily, both Paul’s dad and Emma emerged without a scratch.   This, even though the worst part of the impact was right outside where Emma sits.  Let’s hear it for seat belts and car seats, everyone! 

So that’s another pearl – something to be extremely grateful for in the midst of an otherwise unfortunate situation. 

I’ll keep looking for those pearls.  And trying to focus on the good, instead of on what feels somewhat chaotic around us right now. 

And in the meantime, maybe that d#%! snow out there will melt already, too…


4 Responses to “Pearls in the Slime”

  1. Rhonda Says:

    Oh my!!!! I am so glad grandpa and Emma are ok. How terrifying!

    I hope the stress releases and the snow melts soon.

  2. Lee Says:

    Everything happens for a reason. I’ve come to live by it. We may not learn of the reason for years after the event, but I think we all become better people in the end.

  3. Grandma K Says:

    Grandma and Grandpa feel terrible. Grandma & Grandpa feel God protected Emma along with the safety seat, seat belts and side air bags.

    God did not prevent the accident; however he did in the end I feel keep everybody safe. We are truly blessed. I agree with Lee.

    Grandpa went to reach for a cell phone and in that moment bang. PLEASE, PLEASE DO NOT USE YOUR CELL PHONES WHILE DRIVING or drink coffee or soda or eat.

  4. Rachel Says:

    Don’t feel bad Grandpa and Grandma K. Accidents happen. Everyone is safe and that is what truly matters.