So you think you're gonna settle, eh?

Oh 2016, you really are one for the books, aren't you?

It was only a handful of days ago when I wrote about and reflected on this year - 2016.  And that I could't wait for 2017 because "it finally feels like the year of getting settled."  We had a realtor, we were working on a mortgage, we had a price range.  Tim was given a hammer and a Lowe's gift card for Christmas, because 2017 was deemed the year of the home.  And it was.

Or at least it was supposed to be.

Earlier this week, all plans of us getting settled flew out the window (my dinner almost with them) with a, "I have mixed news."

"Now I want you to let it all sink in before you react."

I listened as my husband informed me there were some changes in his work, that the job was now a position with a higher salary in San Diego, but it wouldn't work out as a remote position from Michigan.  He was given an offer to move.

We had less than 24 hours to decide.

Do we want to make another cross-country move?  We did that, like yesterday.  Well, 6 months ago. But still. Archie choked on a post-it note in the car and puked bright yellow paper chunks.  I just don't know if I'm ready for that again.  Can we survive with the pay cut?  Not really.  Not at all, actually.  But with savings?  Maybe. Getting a house is sure out of the question now, at least for the foreseeable future, we can float on the down payment we were working to build.  Well, if we took the San Diego job, unlike last time, we'd have money to live and go out.  Yeah, but with who?  Our friends are in L.A.  What if we have another kid?  In San Diego?  Do the no help thing again?  I guess I do already have an established relationship with a therapist there...

Back and forth.  Back and forth we went.

And it was hilarious.  How hard we've worked to move to Michigan from (initially) San Diego, and he we were contemplating moving back.  Ah, the unpredictability of the Lochner Life.

Tim ultimately turned down the offer as it wasn't the best call for the family - and it was a blow - a blow to his career, a blow to his spirits, a blow to our bank account.  Thankfully, my husband is the most level-headed, steadfast, forward-thinking, smartest man you'll meet.  He doesn't whine.  He doesn't complain.  If the zombie apocalypse came tomorrow, he'd be my Rick Grimes (or Daryl - he's better, isn't he?).  If we went to war next week, he'd willingly be at the front lines.  A pay cut, a curve ball wouldn't keep this force down.  And he immediately reassured me of that in telling me about connections he's made and leads he has.

The beauty in facing all this freaking change is the unbreakable bond Tim and I have formed.  And I do say that confidently.  We got the news and shortly after we were laughing, reassuring each other, and zeroing in our blessings - especially our kids.  We talked about if and when we were ever financially successful that we would find a way to pay it forward.  And we would make sure of it. Maybe one day we'd own a house that we could rent out for next to nothing to a young family struggling to pay off student loans.  Maybe if Tim is successful in having a company like he wants, he'd have some program that pays off portions of employees' student loans.  Maybe we could just spend the rest of our lives paying for others' coffee in Starbucks drive-thrus.

I've come to truly feel like me and my family could pile into a little, old, beaten piece of s*** car and...go and be simply content.  'Cause that's what the entirety of our family life has been.  We aren't sure what pot hole we'll hit or if we'll run out of gas, but we have each others' company, faith, and good health.

So I say to the future, you can keep chuckin' it at us all you'd like.  We'll keep smiling.  We've got Faith and each other.  So 2017, if you're another year full of curve balls and unexpected job loss and broken bank accounts, bring it.  You won't break us.

#teamlochner // photo cred: Francis & Louise

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