Monday, May 27, 2013


In a pickle.

Okay, so maybe the last one is a little bit extreme. But, some days it feels pretty true.

I have been a bit absent from my blog over the past several weeks for a number of reasons, but largely, it has been a lack of words, a lack of being able to articulate life. And, I do not want to complain. I do not want to seem ungrateful. I do not want to seem selfish. I may be all of those things...but I don't want to be. So, I am going to make an attempt at trying to articulate what this transition has been like.

I left Cambodia nearly three months ago. I left my apartment, my moto, my familiar fruit sellers, my conversations with parking guards. I left the feeling of being constantly damp. I left morning agility runs through the streets. I left the smell of boiling rice pots. I left the sound of the egg man, the bread man, the ice cream man, and the recycling cart. I left the sweet taste of mangoes in the middle of the season. I left a whole lot of very dear friends. I left the ability to switch between languages mid-sentence.

Someone asked me just the other day if I was happy to be back from "over there." My honest response was, "It depends on the day." Because it does.

Some days it is great to drive in my car with the windows down and sun roof open. Some days it is nice to snuggle in a hoodie. Some days it is overwhelmingly exciting to be able to pick up my phone and call one of my best friends without navigating time zones. Some days it is nice to know that I will easily be able to speak with anyone I encounter. Some days it is really nice to run on sidewalks and trails and not worry about rogue motorbikes. And, everyday it is fun to know that there are new adventures ahead and that I get to enjoy them with Adam.

But, some days those things lose their luster.

I cannot go back to the way things were, and I do not want to do that.

Yet, this shift, this segue into what is next, this transition is difficult. I knew it would be. It did not catch me by surprise. It is not that kind of challenge, not the kind that comes in a gust and knocks you down.
Instead, it comes in waves of mourning. It comes in a random evening of lonely tears. It comes in a sudden longing for curry. It comes in a pang of hurt when you miss a friend's wedding. It comes in a deep desire for a resurrection of independence. It comes in a knowledge that no matter where you are in the world, you are missing something. It comes in a boring Friday night. It comes in a realization that it still says "lives in Phnom Penh" on your Facebook page...and changing that seems really you don't. It comes in being left out on both because I was gone and will be again soon...there because I am gone already. It comes in ripples. It comes in deluges.

But, the thing about transition is that it is temporary. Eventually, the transition ends. The dust settles. The open wounds heal. The pain subsides. The memories become sweeter.

So, I suppose I am just holding onto the hope that I will be both filled with grace and extended grace through this transition.

1 comment:

  1. Heather,
    Dear friend it will get better. I still miss my homeland. I still miss the United Kingdom and I only lived there for about 5 months. It will always be a part of you because a part of your heart is there. God gave you a heart for the Cambodians, they have received some of your personality and freedom because of your devotion to them. Also they have seeds of your faith in their country now because you were obedient to the calling he put on your life. Many people have a part of that with you too.

    The journey taken is always good to look back at so you see how far and through what the Lord has carried you. He is holding you in so many ways, as well as preparing you for the future with those past experiences.

    I know you will keep moving forward but always remember the dust, the smell of curry, the smiles of brown faces, the embrace of the Cambodian society and you will go back to visit many times over I'm sure.
    Fondest love always