Friday, January 13, 2017

On Return-Musings and Other Ponderings

January 12th marked the one-year anniversary of our re-entry into America following our 5 year, 2 month Nicaraguan adventure.

Sometimes it feels like we just left Nicaragua and at other times it feels like we’ve been back for more than a year (then I look around at my sparsely furnished home and think of the near panic attack I had in Costco and realize...nope--just a year)! Re-entry back into American life has been AND CONTINUES to be a journey and a process. You simply cannot live outside your passport country and not be changed in some our profound ways! Our re-entry journey has been greatly influenced by several things. We have been warmly enveloped by our new community group here in Colorado for whom we are thankful. We have had the extra blessing of interning (and now working) for people who ‘get it.’ We are thankful for God's providential timing of life's events--we were able to officially 'debrief' our time in Nicaragua at Mission Training International's Debriefing and Renewal program BEFORE we officially moved away from Nicaragua and that allowed us to 'say good-bye' in a healthier way than other global workers have the opportunity to do.

It is challenging to summarize such a multi-faceted journey, so I am going to list some thoughts in no particular order.
  • The re-entry process is not limited to one year.
  • Wal-Mart still overwhelms me and I am thankful for Wal-Mart Grocery Pick-Up Service.
  • I’m still amazed by the USPS, UPS and FEDEX.
  • Not living in ‘everyday-right-outside-your-door-community' is different and at times, hard. I miss the 'sanity loops' and calling for 'Wilson' over the fence.
  • Not living in chaos is very nice.
  • My kids miss Nicaragua. That makes me sad and happy. Sad, because I am sad when my kids hurt. Happy because they loved well and were well loved. {Paradox: it is a way of life for those who have called two distinct places home.}
  • God provides. Hands down.
  • Returns. WOW! I am still amazed at the ability to return products to stores! I mean, they often don’t even need your credit card...I want to be like--"Are you sure? Don’t you just want to hold the card? What about a ‘reason’, do you need an essay outlining the reason for my return? You DO see that I opened that package, right? I mean I TASTED the food." Seriously, I feel like offering a service of returning things for people because I am just so enamored with the whole process!
  • Decision fatigue is a real thing.
  • Friendships take time...and sometimes waiting is hard.
  • Sometimes you really miss the pets you left behind.
  • Missing the friends you left behind hurts. Entrusting those same friendships to God is crucial.
  • I can still pull out some Spanish when I need to. It isn’t pretty...but it never was.
  • Dry climate hair is WAY easier to ‘do’ than humid climate hair.
  • We walk forward richer in heart and mind because of where we've been...and who we've met...and what we've done (or didn't do).
  • Inter-dependence is beautiful and America doesn’t necessarily accept or embrace it. I hope we teach our kids that despite America’s preference for ‘pulling one's self up by one's own boot straps’, inter-dependence is a far more beautiful and Biblical way to live.