When Rest Doesn't Happen

One big win this month was getting family photos taken - here's one of the little guy

One big win this month was getting family photos taken - here's one of the little guy

I can't count how many times I've almost sat down to write a blog post about the past few weeks, and life just got in the way.

We've been back in the States over a month now - over a month! - and Cambodia is already quickly fading into the background.

In the past 4 weeks, we've had a major wedding celebration (in which Andrew and I were both part of the wedding party - talk about culture shock), started renovating our house (mostly Andrew's work, although I did help rip out some old carpet), spent a week in the countryside with my family, sat through about a dozen baseball games (both at Kauffman Stadium in KC and in front of the television), driven 740 highway miles, visited three different churches, moved a garage-full of belongings (but not our stuff - my newly married in-law siblings), drank about 40 cups of coffee, had one job interview (that'd be me), took family photos, made half a dozen library runs, and survived one baby's up-and-down mood swings, teething, and jet lag-induced tantrums.

Like I said, October has been crazy.

One of the things that has surprised me the most has been the feeling that life here is so much faster paced than I expected. I don't quite understand where all my time goes in the day, except for the fact that I spend at least 30 minutes driving anywhere from our temporary home (I really don't like living in the suburbs...but I'm beyond grateful for the free place to crash).

Overall, life here is much easier than Cambodia - no electricity outages, being able to find what I want at the grocery store, credit cards accepted everywhere, and no language barriers to deal with. 

But there's been a lot going on with family, some of it great (weddings!), and some of it not so great (ER visits and hospital stays). And I think that has been more emotionally draining than I realized. I don't feel like we've really had the time we need to process the massive change we've just gone through in moving back to the States. We've been focused on being present for those we love - which is, in itself, an amazing thing to be able to do, considering we were on the other side of the planet six weeks ago. But we haven't spent much time taking care of ourselves.

Considering one of our reasons for moving back home was to rest...that might be a bit of a fail.

In a few weeks, we'll drive to North Carolina for a debrief retreat for international field staff who have recently left their overseas posting with Samaritan's Purse and are transitioning back to life in the States. And it's coming at the perfect time. I've been in the honeymoon phase of reverse culture shock so far (I love everything!), but I have a feeling a down-swing is just around the corner. So I'm really thankful we'll have several days to spend away from our half-renovated house and moving and even our loved ones so we can refill ourselves with God and refocus on his purpose for our lives.

Thanks for your support, your prayers, your warm hugs (both virtual and actual), and your excitement for us moving back to KC. If we're friends in offline life, please forgive me for not calling you or texting you. I actually don't have my own phone number yet, so that puts a damper on communication. But know that I am looking forward to sitting down with you over a cup of coffee and hearing about your life very, very soon.

(and you don't have to wait for me to call - just email me. you know how to find me.)

And hopefully I'll get back into the swing of writing and sharing with you all the thoughts swirling around in my head. Because there are plenty, let me tell you, and if I don't start sharing soon, my head just might explode.

What have you been up to lately?