She was created in 1971 before either of us were born. Built with concrete and wooden 2 x 4s, brick facade and cedar siding, she is a tribute to the decade of my birth. While she has had some updating, we knew going into this #bigthreeof2016 project that making a house wheelchair accessible isn’t just an update, it’s dictated by this object, a symbol of a life we didn’t want; a lifestyle we struggle to embrace.
I’d say it’s ironic, but perhaps as a Christ-follower I should know better. However, since we’ve publicly called out our three big hopes for 2016, Satan has been poking many holes, placing several bumps in the road. The difficulties tend to send me into a place of doubt; did I hear God correctly? Did I not use wisdom? Did I do it wrong? How could I think we could do this? And, the lies begin to swirl around in my constantly circling thoughts; do you really believe God sees you? loves you? is good? Do you really trust him with your lives? still hope he’ll heal Danny? Are you really that stupid? Where is your god? Why hasn’t he saved you yet? He doesn’t care.
I could go on with the list of whispers. And, in my weakness, they are so much harder to keep quiet, slowly becoming louder, overruling any clarity of thought I’d hoped to have. The noise so full of static that I can’t hear God even though I’m desperate to find Him in the rubble.
And, just like that, the plumbing in the house winds up costing about 25% more than expected. The creeping of doubt and guilt weighs heavier.
The house begins to be indicative of how I feel about these last ten years; becoming the physical representation of the angst within me.
I’ve been longing for a home, gasping for room to breathe, freedom to live and something considered normal in this abnormal, upside down, backwards way in which we’ve been thrown into; a pit that biology won’t let us crawl out of. A longing for home, for justice and rightness to find their way to us; that perhaps this house would finally bring peace. The #wheelchair #fixerupper while wanted and exciting, has left me heaped over and crying from the bigness of it all. Even good things bring with them chances of disappointment.
We’ve maxed our budget. The roof had to be replaced. The plumbing in the whole house replaced. The electrical redone and re-positioned. Walls taken down, moved out and shifted. And, there is still so much left to do.
- 2000 square feet of tile. Just for the floor.
- Bathtub. Faucets. Toilets. Grab bars. Sinks.
- Paint. Caulk. Trim work.
- French door refrigerator. Dishwasher. Dual-fuel stove. Top loading washing machine.
- Low lying deck off master for Danny to get outside. Brush cleared out. Bushes removed. Trees taken down.
- Packing materials. Moving. Truck rental.
When we started to look at homes, I have always stated that I had no idea how we were going to do it. I didn’t know how God was going to do it. Knowing we had a lot of wheelchair mandated renovations, I didn’t know where the money was going to come from, who was going to do the work. I just believed. And, if I’m honest with myself and honest with you, I feel the bit of a fool.
God has yet to give me the desire I want the most; my husband. Though I’ve been faithful, and there’s been progress, my heart is still broken for what we’re all missing. The accident didn’t just happen to Danny; it happened to all of us who love him.
For ten years, Danny’s parents have helped us financially. Not only are the hopes and dreams that Danny and I had now unrecognizable since August 16, 2005 so are his parents. Retirement, though planned at age 55, is still not attainable. And, I can’t do anything to fix any of it for any of us. I hate this.
But, this fool typing these words, she still believes. I don’t know why. It seems totally crazy.
The redemption, redesign and restoration of this house may just be more about my soul than anything else.
Please join us in prayer today for our house-the cost, the contractors and the changes we’re going through.
If you want to help off set some of the renovation costs, you can click here for instructions or you can contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stay tuned to our Facebook page for updates on our renovation!