Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Bittersweet Goodbye

There are those times in your life when you know you must say goodbye to something, but if you had it your way, you'd hang on to it, even though it's not a necessity.  Yesterday was one of those days for me.  A time to say goodbye to something I'd prefer to keep, yet the reality is that we really don't *need* it, and saying goodbye to it would bring a great blessing to another family.

A few weeks ago, we were evaluating our vehicle situation.  In that evaluation, we decided to try to sell our 15-passenger van because it has gotten so crowded and cramped for us when we travel as a family.  Believe it or not, we craved something BIGGER than our big ole van!!! 

Anyway, a lady named Wendy contacted me when she heard we might be selling our van, then God worked out all the details.
  • Wendy has two boys adopted from Ukraine, both who have Down syndrome.
  • The family/kid stickers on the back of our van match up to Wendy’s family!
  • Wendy is 40; I am 40.
  • Wendy’s husband is 41; my husband is 41.
  • Wendy and her husband got married December 19, 1992;  Matt and I got married December 19, 1992.
  • Wendy lives in Texas; I live in Texas.
  • Wendy is the person who recommended I purchase the Have Heart book that God used as a major source of healing for us after Chrissie went to heaven, but I didn’t realize until Wendy told me yesterday that she was the person who recommended this awesome healing book.  So grateful to meet the person who God used to direct us toward that amazing tool for grieving parents.
  • Wendy  has been praying for our family for about two years now!

Yesterday Wendy made a six hour trip to our home in order to purchase our van.  It was so great to meet Wendy, and God blessed us with an afternoon to fellowship and even enjoy dinner together.  Then it was time for Wendy to hop in our big ole van and drive away.  That felt a little bittersweet for me, but the joy of blessing their family trumped the selfishness of wanting to hang on to this vehicle for our family. 

As the time drew nearer for us to let the van go, I started reminiscing about the good times we’ve had in this dependable vehicle that kept us safe and allowed us to travel as a family. We bought this van just two months after Chrissie came home in 2009, so it always held a little piece of her in it. After losing a child, it feels like no big deal to say goodbye to a vehicle, but it still felt somewhat bittersweet.  Yep, no doubt we will miss our big ole van, but I'm so glad it's going to an awesome, godly family who will be transporting lots of God’s treasures in it.

After evaluating our vehicle options, we decided we would convert our motor home into a bus that will have seats for all 11 kiddos, yet still be a motor home.  It will have space for all of us, plus all of our stuff.  Strollers, special foods for special kids (nutrition drinks and food allergy kiddos), diaper bags, pack-n-plays, and all of the gear that must accompany us just about everywhere we go as a family.  Bonus:  it will  have a bathroom, a refrigerator, and beds.  Hoping this works!

Thanks, Wendy, for driving out here, purchasing our van, playing with our kiddos, joining us for dinner, blessing us with your wisdom, inspiring us with your stories, and encouraging us with your prayers.  It was GREAT to meet you, and we look forward to hanging out with your family soon!  May our big ole van be a blessing to you and yours for many years to come.

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