This is a long account, and so I'll just write to record what happened, then write to ponder and process later.
First, we woke after not-enough sleep. We dressed and got to McDonalds for breakfast. J4, my son, was thrilled to go inside the McD; we had only ever gone through the drive-thru before. He could see the INSIDE of the drive-thru from the restaurant and was very excited.
After our McBreakfast, we went to Hixson (north of Chattanooga, about a 10 minute drive) to rent the Penske. Ian's sister (I don't know if she wants her name on the interwebs, so I'll call her Alice for the purpose of this blog) watched the boys while we went to rent the truck; Ian then drove the truck to church while I followed him so he could get the feel of the thing.
We parked Penske at church, disconnected the tow dolly, and all drive home.
When we arrived, there were already 6 people waiting for us. What a delight it was to our weary selves! In a trice, all our road-trip luggage was loaded into our cars, the volunteers were divided into Movers and Muscles, and the work had begun.
The Movers stayed at the house and sorted/packed the last of the stuff: pantry items, spices and baking things, linens, that sort of thing. Ian and Alice had stayed up the night before till 3 (yes, that three!), and Ian told her absolutely everything he wanted done for the rest of the packing. So Alice directed the Movers as they packed boxes.
The Muscles caravanned over to the church (there's a spare room there we used for free storage....we love our little fellowship, because the facility is there for us all to use and we use it!) to start loading that stuff. We had moved about 2/3 of our things out of our house for staging, and this was that stuff. Our second dresser, extra desks, boxes and boxes and boxes of books, many bookshelves, etc.
Meanwhile, I was to leave with my sons, J4 and M2. We were going to go to the Creative Discivery Museum but the Movers needed more packing tape, so I was going to make a quick Walmart run. I got there and .... couldn't find my wallet.
I looked in the car. No. I texted Alice, back at the house. No. I called the Penske place. No. I went back home, the Movers stopped their packing and helped me look on all the surfaces. No.
Don't panic. J4 (trying to be helpful) said, "Just buy another one, Mommy!"
I explained that my wallet has my money, my debit card, credit cards, insurance cards, HSA debit card, AAA card....immunization records for the boys...and my drivers license. And my provisional license too. (Inner alarm: squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee. Imagine a high pitched squealing-brakes sound. Yep. That's the anxiety in my head.)
(Because I NEED MY LEGAL IDENTIFICATION for closing the house in TWO DAYS.)
Trying not to panic.
I drove over to church where the Movers had already emptied the storage room and were loading the truck tickety-boo. Ian saw that they were clicking right along so he came to the car and helped by starting to unload all the luggage heaped in all higgledy-piggledy.
Found the keys and wallet in the Be Sure It Makes It To The Car And Sort It Later box. Whew.
Having seen the Movers and the Muscle making huge strides in such a short time, and having not lost my wallet and all its contents after all, I started to relax.
End Part One.