Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Adventure Around the Corner

Today we worked out our international banking, took passport photos for the last stage of visa details, and brought home the Walmart ship-to-store suitcases that we ordered.

There are boxes all over, and things in small piles. It's getting a bit stressful.

We heard that our future co-workers just got their visas, which means ours might be coming soon. This is what we want, but when we heard it we looked at each other with panic in our eyes because there is so much to do.

It feels like things are about to get real. This whole packing-everything-you-own-and-taking-two-small-children-across-the-world thing is a little big crazy.

As I work on all of these details, I have moments when I remember. Arriving in Indonesia is one of my very first memories, if not THE first memory. It was hot and humid. We were in a line, I assume for customs. It was unfamiliar, I was grumpy after the international flight. I remember waking up that night in a guesthouse. Everything was dark and yet I was wide awake and hungry. Mom and Dad fed us airplane cracker packets.

I don't remember life before those moments, but my parents were actually married for six years before they moved to Indonesia. How odd is it that to our kids, the nearly nine years of marriage and six years in Dallas and another six in Chicago will be.... meaningless? It will be pre-history to them. This move we are making here will likely be... their lives.

My first years in Indonesia were spent in Western Indonesia, before we moved to Papua. I remember our little house with a metal post fence and a man named JoJo who functioned as a night watchman. I went to an Indonesian pre-school where we wore uniforms and I got away with a lot because I was a bossy oldest child and likely the teachers were afraid to tell me no. I learned Indonesian instinctively, and I remember knowing things my parents didn't. I learned songs that today I sing as lullaby's to my kids. We took rickshaws to get around.

We slept on beds with long pillows and just sheets. I learned to enjoy sleeping on the tile floor when it was hot. My mom started to learn to cook some Indonesian things. She adapted Indonesian rice porridge to American tastes by cooking it with cinnamon and sweetened condensed milk instead of salt and peanuts. I made it this morning for Judah.

How much of this move will be like going back to the place I grew up? Will this be home? Will it be home to my children? Will it ever be home to my husband?

These questions are in my head, but I am not carrying them heavily. There is no end to the angsty wrestling with "home" and stability in a TCK's life. Instead I just go because of calling and vocation and love and service. How it feels, how relationships are built, and if it ever feels like home, well... that will pan out.

I will treat it all as a grand adventure. For me. For us. For our kiddos. We are getting on an airplane with two small people, our fellow passengers will hate us, our first few days in the middle of jet lag will be insanity, and then we will begin a new daily life in the tropics of Java.

I smile as I picture it in my head. What an adventure. I am excited. I and scared. But mostly excited.

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