If you read my blog post, Off her rocker, you know that I was in a bind. The offer on my house fell through, I had no job, and no plan B. Bad enough right? What I hadn’t told you was that I had also given almost everything I had away.
It started when I met a kiddo and her mom on one of my last days at work. I found out that they were moving into a new place and didn’t have anything to move with them. That started the ball rolling and within a couple of weeks my house was almost empty. All of my dishes, silverware, cooking utensils, furniture, some of books, artwork, dang near everything I owned went to this sweet little family. If not to them to someone else who needed it. All of my scrubs, most of my clothes – shoes I didn’t even remember having – went to people living in shelters. It was ridiculous how much stuff I had that I didn’t need. And it felt great to give it all away.
The idea was to travel light, right?
Well, I wasn’t traveling anywhere until I had another buyer and I was down to what I could load in a van. I tried to keep my spirits up and I laughed every time I picked up a package of pasta at the store. I didn’t have a pot to boil water in. Knowing very well that I might not have a pot to do anything else in if my luck didn’t change.
I took my editor, Karen Newman, up on the offer of her house on Amelia Island for a month, rent free. Why not? I could stay in Tennessee and worry or I could take my pups to the beach. I caught a little bit of flack from worried friends for taking off on a “vacation” when I should have been sitting home worried sick, trying to figure out what I was going to do. But for me, it was a no brainer. Karen had made the offer before the deal fell through on my house, plus Karen’s kitchen in Florida was stocked with pots, pans, etc and I was tired of eating sardines and crackers…
The pups and I settled in and the salty air cleared my brain. After having a few stress free days to think it over, I called my favorite real estate agent back in Nashville, Shelia Barnard, who sold me my little East Nashville house. When my time was cut short in Florida due to Hurricane Irma evacuations, I came home, put on my big girl panties and started working on my house so Shelia could get it sold.
I posted jokingly on FaceBook that I needed a place to go while my house was on the market. Having three dogs to pack up every time an agent wanted to show the house was kind of nuts. And not being able to control my creative nervous energy – I’d recently started making copper jewelry (like everyone does when they are up to their eyeballs in other things like re-plastering old walls and painting) – my kitchen looked like a blacksmith shop was even nuttier.
I was joking of course. I couldn’t afford to rent a place for me and three pups plus pay my mortgage in the situation I’d gotten myself in. Thinking about the mortgage alone was enough to make the average person break out in hives.
But I was wrong.
I got a text from someone I knew way back in my high school days to check out a rental she had in Adams, TN. It was her husband’s grandparents house on seventy acres with three ponds, an old cemetery, cows and coyote that she was sure my pups would love.
She was right, they loved it, and I did too. I didn’t think I could afford it, but it turned out thanks to Tracy’s big, sweet, generous heart, I could.
We moved into Rock”A”Rosa Farms in October, right before Halloween. I spooked myself and the pups with stories of the Bell Witch who “lived” nearby. Once or twice I wasn’t sure if it was a coyote calling outside our window or if she was making her rounds on the farm. Knowing the old cemetery was on the property made it even better.
Thanks to friends and my little sister who set me up, I had a desk to write on, two chairs to sit in, a pot to make soup and silverware to eat with. (Silverware thanks to sweet MaryRuth’s new skills as a kleptomaniac at the nursing home before she passed, but that’s another story for another day.)
I found that sleeping on an air mattress wasn’t so bad and living out in the middle of nowhere suited me. My pups took to the role of stinky old country dogs like ducks to a junebug, and Pearl spent hours chasing frogs in the ponds while the boys ate things I don’t want to think about and rolled in things I constantly washed off of them.
It was heaven on earth.
One month at the farm turned into four months and we were there for some of the prettiest sunrises
I’ve ever seen, plus some beautiful snow.
And I had one of the best Christmases I’ve had in years when I reconnected with my 7th grade science teacher, Nita Heilman, and spent it with her and the guests at Room In The Inn at her church. None of that would have happened if it hadn’t been for Rock”A”Rosa.
I’ll fill you in on that with Off her rocker, part three, so stay tuned.
Until then remember – It’s possible that things will turn out better than you could ever imagine.