As I sit here in a quiet house, in the dark of night, alone, I feel like it is costing too much. My mama is having surgery right now. Everything in me wishes to be there, sitting in the waiting room, waiting to hear she made it through just fine. I want to be the one making her meals and cleaning her house when she can’t do it. I want to pay her back just a little for everything she has so selflessly done for me. And I can’t.
There are moments when life over here feels so worth it. When everything feels like sunshine and rainbows. The language clicks, the friendships form easily. Conversations are fruitful and lives are changed.
Then there are days when nothing goes right. When you find yourself tucked into the corner of the kitchen sitting on a stool weeping into your arms because you just can’t figure out how to keep going.
It seems like every day is a new day of counting the costs. What am I giving up to be here? What of those things do I need to lay at Father’s feet because I am not actually entitled to them like I feel that I am? It is an endless cycle of refinement, filled to the brim with the evidence of my sin and utter need for a Savior. And you know what? Jesus knew this about me. He knew I would struggle. He knew I would cry. He knew I would throw little fits and let my emotions carry me up and down. And He still chose me. He chose me. That, my friend, is love. True Love.
We have been back now for about 6 weeks, and I finally feel like I can take a breath. We have been running since the wheels hit the ground!
We are working furiously to catch up on our school work, as we decided to take a slower approach while stateside in order to soak up the time with friends and family. I am not confident that we will finish by August, but it won’t be for lack of effort! Gracie is taking Biology this year, and the first dissection she had to perform was an earthworm. I, being the cruel headmaster mama, made her wear goggles. It was purely for my enjoyment and, while she knew it, she graciously played along. Ellie decided she wanted to be the assistant so she also donned goggles but decided to take it up a notch and found Cameron’s swimming ear plugs to stick up her nostrils to block out the stink. Ha! Ellie has enjoyed being reunited with all her dolls and Legos and most days one or both attend school with her. Faith tends to stay upside down half the day, perfecting her handstands.
I have been enjoying baking again, especially now that I have this beautiful mixer, courtesy of some sweet friends at Lane Prairie Baptist Church. The first time I made homemade bread, my girls sighed with happiness and asked why we ever buy bread from the store. Ha! We have also really been enjoying the Smithfield bacon that we can now buy locally!
Speaking of local. Early one morning Cam and I went to the market to get our fruits and veggies. I think I must have forgotten about the smells because I waltzed in holding my coffee cup with a contented smile on my face. The record player screeched and I never took a drink of that coffee. Some things just aren’t made to smell before 8am.
We are getting back into the groove of China life and figuring out this new city we live in. So far, we are really enjoying it! We have found some new places nearby and are starting to see the same faces and be recognized when we visit. It is starting to feel like home!