Friday, May 16, 2014

Bloghopping Around the World

Sometimes a link on FB turns into bloghopping that touches my heart. I find a link to a blog about TCKs*, and click on another related blog, and another, and another, and start to realize and remember that my crazy transitional international experiences are normal, even in their oddities.

Saying goodbye from 2000 miles away? Yep, been there, done that. Thankful for skyped-goodbyes and friends who love me and helped me mourn my amazing grandfather last month in a memorial service here in Tanzania. Thankful for people who asked questions and wanted to listen and hear about this man that loved and supported me in so many incredible ways.

Photo Credit:
This picture? Yep, totally my heart right now as I sell everything I own, try to think about how much I want to bring back to the States and how it’ll fit into three action packers of 50lbs or less. Knowing “home” in the States is a myriad of places, and wondering how Holland, MI might refit into the picture this time. Remembering that my new niece whom I haven’t yet met is living in FL, half my supporting churches and friends are in NC, family in Kzoo and IN and elsewhere, friends everywhere. I think I have a lot of driving in my near future!

And driving? Come to think of It, I’m going to have to remember how to drive on the other side of the street. Hmm.

Blogs like this - TCKs - that don’t EXACTLY fit (I’m not a mom yet) but which I can totally relate to in many ways as a teacher of these amazing little people, wondering if I’m adequately helping prepare them for their various “home-away-from-foreign-home countries” by teaching money in three currencies, seasons in different hemispheres, time zones, the ins-and-outs of English languages, and praying for and loving on these kids that I struggle with leaving behind as I continue on the journey God’s laid out for me. On every continent I leave. Every.single.time.

Or blogs like this - Debunking 5 Myths about Expat Life - that explain bits and pieces of the good and sometimes difficult snapshots of life I can’t quite put into words, but wish people understood anyway.

I recently wrote a friend, saying: "I totally understand the feeling of missing and appreciating people who are far away... a missionary-friend wrote once: 
"At any given moment, I will always be missing someone, always be appreciating the presence of whoever I’m with, always dreading saying goodbye, and always anticipating a reunion with someone else on another continent." 
I saved it as I felt like it pretty much summed up my existence recently. I also found this quote online:

I realized something very similar to this when I was in the States for furlough, at Christmas, with family, and realizing that some of my "family" was overseas and elsewhere in the country/world. It dawned on me that everyone I know and love will never be in the same place with me all at once - it's the price I pay for getting to know so many wonderfully amazing people around the world!"

It's funny to read the thoughts of people scattered across the world - China, America, New Zealand, Kazakhstan, Nepal, Tanzania, Burundi, Ivory Coast, even America - and realize that though there are differences, we are all remarkably feeling and experiencing many of the same things as we seek to follow God on this journey. And it’s always nice to know that there are people in my life who totally “get” where I’m at – and many many more writing amazing blogs that share my heart and my thoughts and that I appreciate greatly though they’ll probably never know.

*TCK = Third Culture Kids

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