no matter how many times i looked at that chart and no matter how much i mentally prepared myself and told myself this day would eventually come, it still came. and it was still hard.
several weeks ago i suddenly came to the realization that my life here is significantly harder than it was back at home. (not to say that life is easy in america, its just personally for me, my life was easier). i also don't write this to make you feel sorry for me or anything like that. my heart is just to be real. to be honest about my time here. to be truthful about what this really looks like.
a few weeks back i was talking to my friend about how i was just having a hard time and how i didn't even really understand my emotions, because they tended to be so conflicting. i love it here. i love our church. i love the thai people and their genuine kindness and hospitality. i love that things are new & exciting and unknown. i want to be here, but i also long to be at home. i love america. i love spending time with my family. i love the ease of going out to get what i want. i love that i know things and they are normal. how could i be feeling all those emotions at the same time and begin to make any sense of it? my friend, who has lived here for over 10 years, told me that she completely understands and if i could put words to those feelings then a lot of people overseas would be able to resonate with them.
the longer i live here the more i realize that even when you live here for over a decade its still hard. yes, it does get easier after time, but its still not remotely similar to the first 25 years of our lives and what we are used to.
so i've decided to write. to write my blog about my real journey. the hardships. the joys. the celebrations. the victories. the ups & downs. and the wide range of emotions. because i don't want to just depict the awesome and the fun. i want to depict the truth. both the good & bad. i want to write so people can resonate with my words. so others can be affirmed when they feel like the very worst missionary too. because i promise you we all do at some point.
in my hardship. in the good times. god has taught me a lot of things. but probably the most important thing is that i cannot do this without him. i would have no grace. no help. no one that could sustain me. and i would have gone home. i need him more than anything.
"for i, the lord you God, hold your right hand; it is i who say to you,
'fear not, i am the one who helps you.'"
so i'm okay. and i'll live. if god is for us, then who can be against us? but i guarantee i'll be stronger and more refined when i'm finished.
so this is the start. the start of my reality. my experiences. the good, the bad, and the ugly. let's start this journey.