A Life Changing Phone Call

As the sunlight shined through the blinds we threw back the covers and quickly started our day. Lots of things on the checklist; pack mine & Dawson’s bag, re-arrange and clean up the house so it would look great for showings. As we wrapped up packing and cleaning, we knew it was time to get our big girl/boy pants on and finally do this. My procrastinating to leave was a little out of control this day. Somehow I managed to clean and pack for 7+ hours? lol! By Mid-Afternoon the 3 of  us loaded into this big orange and white striped truck and headed for the unknown. I already knew this 20 hour drive was going to be a long one because of where we were headed and what we were driving. Little did I know it was going to be a little painful and extremely uncomfortable. The only place to properly sit a car seat safely was on the passenger side, which meant I had to squeeze my big behind in the small middle half seat. When I say half seat, I mean the back and bottom were super short and little. The lap belt was super big but I constantly wondered why? I had a hard enough time fitting my behind in the seat as the seat belt dug into my side. There was also no leg space. The noise of the trucks engine was so loud and every bump on the road could be felt times 10.  All Nick and I could do is constantly giggle as we realized how crazy  this adventure was going to be.  On the other hand, Dawson was pure joy to listen to. He thought it was the coolest thing he was riding in a super big truck and absolutely loved it. He could see everything well being higher up.  With an iPad in his hand,  he was care-free. We made it about 3 hours away before we stopped for dinner and to stretch our legs. Back on the road again it was. 3 hours later we decided to call it a night. We called Joplin, Missouri home for this night.

The next morning we were back on the road again. This time Dawson was getting a little more anxious to see his new house. It was getting a little harder explaining we had 14 hours to go before we would be there. Right outside of Kansas City, Missouri, Nick received a call from his boss. He didn’t answer because he was driving and it was too hard to pull over where we were. A few minutes later his phone rings again. It’s his boss, this time leaving a voicemail saying please call me as soon as you can. Nick knew then something was going on and said that he needed to try to pull over at the next exit. As we get off the road and in the clear, Nick steps out of the truck. I patiently wonder what in the world is going on and could a miracle possibly happen? I try to ensure Dawson everything is ok while he is wondering why we are stopped on the side of the road and daddy is standing next to a ditch on the phone. lol It was a phone call in my eyes that seemed to last forever! I wanted to be in the know so badly. What in the world was Nick grinning ear to ear about?  As Nick opened the door to climb back in the truck, he has the biggest smile on his face with tears in his eyes. “You are never going to believe this, I was just offered to turn this U-Haul around and move to San Antonio instead of North Dakota, all for the same offer!”  (WHAT IN THE WORLD!!!) I was totally speechless, but our precious little boy was not. “NO…I want to go to North Dakota and see my new house, come on daddy, let’s go!”  The innocence of a sweet little boy brought more tears to now both of our eyes. All I could tell Nick, was two words,  PRAISE GOD!!!!!!  Nick stepped out of the truck again to call his boss back to say he will accept the deal. We serve such a faithful God!! This phone call that we received outside of Kansas City  has forever changed our lives in so many ways! That phone call came after Nick’s boss, the VP of Sales for his company, had a meeting that morning with the CEO of the parent company of Nick’s company.  It was decided in this meeting with the CEO’s that it would be better for Nick to move to San Antonio, because it’s a better place for him to raise a family than North Dakota. Nick moving to North Dakota benefits the company a lot more, but they told him they wanted to do what’s best for Nick too. Is that not the biggest blessing in the world?!!!!!! My heart was overwhelmed with tears of joy!!! How could this be? There was not an opening in San Antonio?  We believe this…. When God’s sees you take a leap of faith, in his timing he will always provide and open doors! We are beyond blessed for God opening this door for us. What a roller coster it had been to get this far in the process of knowing North Dakota was our new home, but we wouldn’t change these life lessons for anything in the world. The priceless memories of hearing our families and friends voices after telling them we are not moving to North Dakota, is something we will always treasure. Our story has not only lifted our spirits, but has showed our family how amazing our God is. We are now going to be 10 hours from home instead of 20 hours.

As we tried to quietly gather our thoughts so Dawson wouldn’t worry or know what’s going on.  We kept heading north to the nearest town so we could stop to collect our thoughts and come up with a new game plan. Nick’s boss told us to head straight to San Antonio and start looking for a place to live and expense everything along the way to the company. Sounds great, but that’s a little easier said than done. We had a billion logistics to figure out and a lot of things to take care of. This Fabulous orange and white truck was due back in North Dakota in three days and we have a truck load of stuff that isn’t fitting for a new home in San Antonio. Let’s say at this time it’s still 95 degrees in San Antonio and everything we owned was for 60 degrees and below weather like it was in North Dakota. We also had no major furniture. We had a washer, dryer, dresser, chest, entertainment center, recliner, 2 televisions, lots of toys and all winter clothes! No beds, couches, table or summer clothes. To top everything off Nick’s company truck was still in North Dakota!

We stopped for lunch right outside Kansas City, Mo. This is where we met the first interesting person along our trip. While eating our lunch at Burger King a very friendly lady approached us. “Does your child like Cars the movie?” Dawson’s eyes lit up as I responded, yes it’s actually one of his favorites. She then motions for an older gentlemen to come on over. “Meet the first and original Mater!”  They both begin to proceed to tell us how this man was the inspiration behind Mater because he can turn his legs around backwards and walk. They had some autographed cards they handed us and their eyes lit up with joy by us being so interested in their story. They asked about where we were headed and Nick says, “20 minutes ago we were headed to Minot, North Dakota, but now we are headed to San Antonio, Tx.” The couple then replies by saying,” Oh you work in the military that’s great.”  LOL! Nick shakes his head and fills the couple in a little more on our story and how it’s such a blessing we are now headed south. That opened the flood gates per say. They then went in long detail about how we needed to take Route 66 back and stop and see all the places that were filmed in the Cars movie. They even offered to put a call into a lady who was the inspiration behind the character Flo. Nick and I both felt bad we weren’t as excited about the Cars movie and the characters as this sweet couple was.  Our minds were just spinning and we needed a few minutes to just think out loud for a minute. After about a 30 minute conversation with our new Cars fanatic couple, they finely left us so we could eat are then cold food. God love this older couple though, they were too cute and super proud that they knew everything about the Cars movie.

We gathered our thoughts and decided we would make it as far as we could south and make it a day.  Our emotions were physically draining us and we could see talking about this place called “San Antonio” in front of Dawson was making him question things. We wanted to make sure he was worry free so we decided not mention “San Antonio” again until he fell a sleep.  He is a super smart little boy and picks up on everything. He loves to worry like his mommy. For 3 weeks we had been preparing him for this move to North Dakota. We needed to plan things out  more before we discussed it with him. As we drove hour after hour, all I could think about was Dawson. What are we to do when we get to San Antonio, he sees no house and we are staying in a hotel? How will it be for him to travel around this monsterous town as mommy and daddy search for our next new home? I could not come to peace about any of it. I was so blessed to be going South now, but WOW how our world has been turned around. We made it to McAlester, OK when we decided to call it a night. We were now back 4.5 hours from  home where we left 2 days ago. lol! Nick and I discussed our concerns of taking Dawson to San Antonio and not having any type of plan in place. We knew that wouldn’t be the best environment for him. Nick called his mom to let her know our concerns and to see if she would be willing to take care of Dawson for us while we were in San Antonio for a week.  We planned on at this point for the next morning to drive a few more hours into Dallas and Nick would drop Dawson and I off at the airport. This way we could fly Dawson home. Then I would just fly to San Antonio and Nick would pick me up. I called my dad to fill him in on what we were thinking. As I told him my plans to fly, he told me not to worry about that mess.  He said I will be there when you wake up in the morning to pick “Rambo” (his nickname for Dawson) up. I will drive him back to Searcy and you can have Nick’s mom pick him up. What a blessing my dad is! Without even being asked, he took it upon himself to make this 9 hour round trip for us.  All our worries with Dawson were soon going to get better. We told Dawson the next morning, that there was a slight change of plans and mommy and Daddy had to go to San Antonio and that his Poppi was coming to pick him up at the hotel. Then his Ne-Ne was going to play all week with him.  Boy was Dawson ecstatic! Bless his sweet heart he was so confused and couldn’t figure out why we weren’t in North Dakota, so knowing he was going home was the best news for him!

At 8:30a.m my phone rings and it’s dad saying he’s in the hotel parking lot ready for Rambo. We climbed into the back of the U-Haul truck and dug out all Dawson’s clothes, toys and necessities we could find and sent them on their way. What a since of relief we had knowing we didn’t have to drag Dawson through what was ahead, but inside we knew we were going to miss him like crazy.  As we headed back upstairs to our room, we went through the long list of calls we had to make.  Top of the list, trying to get U-Haul to allow us to drop off this orange beauty now in San Antonio instead of North Dakota. Also finding a place to store all our belongings because the chance of finding temporary housing (apartment) in 2 days wasn’t going to happen.  After we took care of a few calls, we hit the road again. San Antonio bound! This was a much easier drive for several reasons. I no longer had to sit in the mini seat, I had the luxury passenger seat. Also, we could freely talk about the future and what we needed to do. Nick’s company has an account with LaQuinta, so we knew all along to stay where there was one. Once we got to San Antonio we knew we were soon going to be without a vehicle. We decided to call it a night at the LQ hotel next to the San Antonio airport. This way we would have easy access to rental car places in the morning.

The next morning Nick jumps in the hotel shuttle and heads to a rental car place which sent us into panic. They would not let us rent a car because we didn’t have a Texas drivers license, plane ticket or any proof of car insurance on us. Of course we don’t have any of those, we are not a resident of Texas and our proof of insurance is Arkansas. Nick fills the people in a little bit on our story. They were kind enough to give Nick a ride over to their competitors who would allow people to rent a car without all those requirements. You just have to pay a pretty penny more. 3 hours later Nick makes it back to the hotel in a vehicle! Boy were we excited! We knew the hunt for finding a home soon had to start asap. I had done a little research and found an Apartment Finders nearby and made an appointment. We head out in search of finding this place and notice the area we are headed was a little rough, but what do we know about San Antonio? Nothing…so we keep driving. We notice police flying by us and a helicopter flying above. A minute or so later we arrive at our destination in this shopping center that had seen it’s better days . Not paying attention to our surrounding we both happily jump out of the vehicle in hopes this place is going to solve our problems and find us an apartment. We get to the back of the vehicle and realize we are in the middle of a crime scene. Police with guns everywhere, a police helicopter flying above, a television crew waiting to get out of their vehicle. I slightly panic as Nick motions to come on now. As we enter the door to the apartment finders.  They inform us the Cricket phone store next door was just robbed at gun point and they were searching for the suspect. (I instantly think…. Awesome!! Just our luck.) They then say, “Welcome to San Antonio, have a seat”. (Are you serious?!!! I am ready to hit the road at this moment knowing they are searching for a suspect and I can’t understand a word anyone is saying. My spanish skills aren’t that great)  Without going into great detail, let’s just say we soon left this place and decided it would be much easier/safer to find a place to live on our own. 🙂 Ha!  This was a task we thought would be easy, but let’s just say in a town the size of San Antonio and how rental laws work here it was extremely stressful. We hotel hopped from the LQ at the airport to the LQ at the River Walk so we could have a bigger room since the walls were beginning to feel like they were caving in on us.

The day had come where we needed to return our big orange gas guzzling truck. Luckily the U-Haul we were assigned to return our truck to also had storage facilities. This was a long day. It’s so much easier cramming a 14ft truck then unloading it! Especially when you have to cram it all in a 10×10 storage. 5 hours later we were exhausted and back on the road apartment searching. Looking back now, I’m pretty sure people thought we were one crazy pitiful couple. For 8 days Nick and I toted around a few boxes and 4 (girly) suit cases that we carried around in a rental car and toted in and out of hotels. We had no home to leave anything in, so all our personal belongings we toted everywhere with us. We had a file box of important papers, a box of food, a box of shoes, a bag of Dawson’s clothes we forgot to send home with him, a bag of clothes for Nick and a bag of clothes for me.  Clothing was a little bit of an issue since it was super hot outside. We had packed mainly winter clothes and only a couple summer outfits. We literally did laundry at the hotel every other day. This was definitely one of the craziest times of our lives we will not forget and still giggle about.

After 7 days of endlessly apartment searching/researching meeting a lot very interesting people we finally found a place to call Home for a few months. 🙂 What a relief this was to finally find a nice and safe place that was available!

The next day after we signed our 4 month lease. Nick’s company flew him to North Dakota and me back home to my sweet boy!

I am calling it a night on this one. 🙂

Next time…more on our airport craziness, Nick’s long drive back to Arkansas &  breaking it to Dawson San Antonio was going to be our new home now.

I hope to wrap up journaling our wild adventure in the next post.  So I can share more on what we are up to now!  I promise to end the extremely lengthy  posts as well. 🙂 Ha!

Also I want to say THANK YOU to those whose are reading this blog.  (Blogging keeps me sane…lol)  I truly appreciate your comments, the sweet texts I have received and your prayers!  Just inspiring one person by sharing our journey makes blogging all worth it!

Blessings,

Chel

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