It is 12:13 AM and I can't sleep, even though every part of me aches. I am so full of emotion, and I figure this blog is the best outlet for it, so here it goes.
Tonight, Cody and I said goodbye to our house for the last time. Tomorrow it is all ours and we will get to live there. The end of this build has been so overwhelming to me, in such a good way. I keep having these realizations that life is changing--no, life is going to go back to normal. At Wendy's for dinner, Cody and I started talking about our schedule for next week, and I blanked out on things we have to do. We won't be going out to build. We'll be living in our house.
The stress is also overwhelming. We have been working so many long, hard hours, it is incredible. As the secretary, I can say that this week alone our team topped 1000 hours (totalling 16000 for the whole build). Many people themselves did 50, 60, even 70 hours--again, per person, not per family. We had all-nighters and early mornings, and tonight when Cody and I dragged our tired feet to the car to go home, we were the first ones to go--at 10:45 PM. Tired is and understatement. Exhausted isn't even adequate. The only way to describe this feeling: ready.
We are ready for this big change. It has been a long time coming. We are excited, and terrified. Even as hard as it all was, it became a routine, and those things can be hard to change. The biggest difficulty has been all the time spent away from our children. We love them so much, and miss them terribly when we are gone. They have been so patient and understanding, but I know we have asked too much of them. The months of time we missed being with them are gone, and they will never come back. All we can hope for is that we did everything we could, and that Heavenly Father will help us fill in the gaps, and our children will someday come to learn and understand that what we did, we did for them. In the meantime, I plan on holding on to my kids now and not letting go for a very, very long time.
I know tomorrow at the open house I'll get two questions over and over: "Would you do this again?" or "Was it worth it?" The answers: Yes, it was worth it. Yes, I would do it again in a heartbeat. But I did NOT build a house, or even nine houses--so if you think that is what this program was about, you're wrong. We built a neighborhood of nine homes, each one with personalities and dreams and a future. We rebuilt our lives. We changed fundamentally, and that amount of change can only be wrought by the most humbling circumstances imaginable. Yes, I would do it all again, absolutely. No regrets. But please, before I go start building houses again, may I take a nap?