Life can be difficult, challenging, overwhelming, brutal, unpredictable, messy, and just plain awful. This is not one of those times! This is one of those stop-catch-your-breath…kickback-and-put-your-feet-up times. So, I invite you to do the same and just enjoy the pure delight of how my husband and I came to find ourselves riding those blessed waves of synchronicity, the handprint of the Unseen Hand, onto a new shore where, to our heart’s amazement, we were welcomed home. Disclaimer! Hold on to your hat! This is a wild ride!
It was not the first time we had visited Clocktower Place over the years when we got in the mood to downsize. But, the time for moving had just never felt right. Then, in March, on a whim, we decided to use one of those beautiful spring days to check out some of the newer mill building apartments. Just having fun. Nothing clicked. Felt too much like hotels. Then, about to head home, I said, “Why don’t we stop by Clocktower and see…” We were quite loose about it as Clocktower is known for staying full and they don’t keep a waiting list anymore. You just have to be there at the right time when something comes available. So, we casually stopped in and gave the managing agent our full wish list – why not? Two bedrooms, two baths, riverside only, largest sun porch available, upper floor, two underground parking places. She just smiled kindly, asked us to fill out a visitor’s card, and told us to call every few days or so to check in. We left and really didn’t think much about it anymore. After all, we were just out poking around on a beautiful day.
Then, about an hour after we got home, I got the email. “Good news! I just got notice on an apartment with everything you asked for. Can you come see it Friday?” I replied that we couldn’t as we babysat on Fridays and I was giving a workshop on Saturday so the earliest we could come would be Monday. (the office is closed on Sunday) She responded that Monday at 11:00 AM would be fine. I remember thinking it would likely be gone by then but felt oddly okay about it. Monday morning arrived and we saw the apartment. The views made my heart stop! The woman told us she had two more appointments after us. The message was clear. If we wanted it, we had to make a decision right then and there. And, so we did!
Driving home, we thought, “Holy Sugar,” or something remotely similar! “Yikes! What just happened?! Now, we’ve got to sell our house!” But, little did we know we had just been hoisted up to start our wild ride on those blessed waves.
For the next few weeks, we did our best to catch up on fifteen years of differed maintenance – interior touchups, cleaning out, repairing – all those we’ll-do-it-one-day when there’s time projects. We took items to be sold on consignment and made many trips to Good Will and the dump. After our moving sale we still had a few things left – couch, washer and dryer, and some smaller items. After posting these, I heard from someone who knew of a family who could very much use all we had. They came with a truck and took everything to deliver to the family. Two items, a small chair I had had as a child and a big white teddy bear with a green ribbon, went to a three-year-old girl who would soon be getting her own room for the first time. Later, I was told how thrilled she was to have the chair and teddy, that they had a special place in her new room.
During this time, my husband was hit by a logging truck making a turn. There was only minor damage to his car but the event, it turned out, was to have much wider implications. The driver of the logging truck was a young guy, just his second day on the job, and his boss was riding with him. As they waited for the police, my husband struck up a conversation with the boss encouraging him to go easy on the new driver. It turned out that the boss and his son had a housing repair company. Suddenly, the impossible task of finding someone to come and do all our various outside projects in just the time allotted was taken care of. Then, only days before our Open House, when the first people were to walk through, the roof stared leaking over the entry to our home from the screen porch. My husband called him back in a panic and asked if he could come and fix it. We waited anxiously to see if he could rearrange his already scheduled jobs for the next few days. He did and he completed the work the day before the Open House.
Meanwhile, the outside of the house, first visible from the driveway, desperately needed painting. But, in March? We contacted the man who had painted our home in the past, now busily engaged with indoor jobs, and asked if he could possibly spare us a few days should it ever stop raining. Would it be warm enough? Once again, the man rearranged his scheduled on the only three days we had without rain and was able, just in the nick of time, to complete all the necessary painting on our house.
Finally, we were all set for our Open House! Then, before the end of the day, our realtor called with what she described as “the deal of the century.” And, so it was!! Neither she, nor my husband who’d been in real estate most of his life, had ever seen such an offer. Just picture the most ideal circumstances you could imagine and then double that and you might come close! And, they were willing to close the end of May meaning there would be no overlap of our mortgage and apartment rent. Most importantly, we were later to discover that they were the perfect buyers for our beloved home. We knew they would love it as we had.
Now, a side note you can receive as you may but confirmed to me (as if that was needed😊) that the Unseen Hand was afoot. 20 has always been a very important number in my life. I was born on the 20th, married my husband on the 20th, opened the first Tree of Life business on 20 Middle St., graduated from Andover Newton receiving my doctorate on the 20th, just to name a few examples. Well, our Open House, the day we received our offer, was April 20th and the movers moved us into our apartment on May 20th. I can assure you these were not dates planned ahead. We were much too consumed by the process to notice such details. In fact, the first night we were in our apartment, I was almost asleep, when I bolted up and asked, “What’s today’s date?!” Another related incident, which will require another blog😊, was that my book, The Call of the Mourning Dove: How Sacred Sound Awakens Mystical Unity, was released by my publisher, Wipf and Stock, on May 20th as well. I rest my case!!!
And, so now we begin our days with coffee on our sun porch overlooking the beautiful river and, most days, enjoy our late afternoon tea there as well. We feel like we have brought with us only what was the most special. We feel strangely unburdened and free. We did so love our house and will forever thank its spirit for all the beautiful memories that happened there but the Unseen Hand knows our full journey where we can only glimpse the next turn in the bend. It was only ten weeks from the day we causally strolled into Clocktower to the day we were moved. I do not know, nor do I need to know, why we were clearly brought here now. But, I do know that I trust the Unseen Hand much more than any notion or explanation I could fabricate. No, it is quite enough to know that on that day in March we found ourselves unexpectedly hoisted up, yet held fast, to ride those blessed waves and then were brought in for a soft landing, finding ourselves on a new shore we could have never imagined.
Sometimes when I look out our window at the wispy trees bending over the river, I remember that first email, the family who needed our things and the little girl who now enjoys my chair and teddy. I remember the young guy who drove the logging truck and the man who so graciously repaired our home. I remember the painter who made a special effort to help us on the only few dry days. I remember meeting the buyers for the first time and knowing they were the perfect ones for our home. And, I remember bolting up from an almost sleep that first night in our apartment to realize it was the 20th.
And, sometimes, if I am just still enough, I can hear the Unseen Hand in the wind, moving those wispy trees, saying every so faintly…