We are 15 days away from selling our home of the last 7 years and 3 months. The following day, we plan to buy the house we’ve always wanted. I was describing our new house to a friend, and she reminded me that two years ago, I told her about the house I eventually wanted, and it sounded like the same house we are buying! I didn’t remember telling her until she started reminding me of the details. Ranch style, one story, wood burning fireplace, on acreage, reasonably sized, with an eat-at bar in the kitchen. All the little things that have always said home to me are present in our new place.

I reflected after that conversation that Hubs and I, and our family, are about to have everything we always wanted, material and spiritual. It was a huge revelation. We have our Missing Piece, Sugar Biscuit. All our kids are happy and under our roof and doing well. Our marriage is strong, my writing career is going well, I’ve been blessed with the ability to understand a deeper connection with the Divine, to hear things and see things not everyone sees and hears. Hubs job is stable and strong and provides well. In general, life is good, and we are content.

Five to seven years ago I was unhappy, bored with life, seeking to fill myself through Things and empty friendships. Then, Hubs and I made a concerted effort to build a village of friends who reflected our values and beliefs. Having a core group of people around us who loved us and made us better people was a relief, and changed so many parts of our lives for the better.

Three years ago, I was invited last minute to go to rural Tanzania with my step-father, a bean to bar chocolate maker, to source beans for his fair trade company. It changed my life. I saw things and felt things I will never forget, and it was on this trip that I made the final decision to become a foster parent, something I’d been kicking around my entire adult life.

Two years ago, we brought the baby who would become my son home. We welcomed into my home to very special little brothers who still have footprints on my heart. We learned the ropes of foster parenting, did a sometimes poor job of balancing it all and tending to our biological kids, and did our best to keep our heads above water, while trying to help Sugar Biscuit’s mom get him back.

One year ago, after sending two sweet brothers to a new home, we welcomed them back after a failed adoption, and sent them, finally, to a forever family. We fought an epic battle in court to keep Sugar Biscuit safe. We won. We made him ours forever. I began to believe in the team of unseen guides and angels that I’ve always had on my side. Our oldest daughter left home, learned some lessons, and came back changed for the better.

The last seven years, we’ve put in so much hard work. We’ve planted roots, pruned back the growth as needed, made mistakes and celebrated breathtaking successes. I am so looking forward to a season of rest. It is time to reap, to plant new seeds, turn over fresh soil to the sun. After everything we’ve been through, I now try to live in a state of gratitude, mindful of each little blessing along the way. I can’t wait to stand on my new back porch, hands on my hips, look out at the trees and the grass, and breathe a deep, whispered sigh of thanks.