Tuesday, January 19, 2010

January 18b

January 18, 2010
I’ve been thinking about this entry for a week now and I think its just time I sit down and write it! It was terrible to leave my family in the states when I flew back to Honduras on the 10th. I cried like no grown man or woman should cry, and felt as if my insides were being torn out when I stopped hugging my mom to go into the airport. I said to my mom very strongly, “don’t let me do anything like this again!” There was some truth to it obviously, but also I think I was just emotionally overwhelmed with the task at hand.
When I arrived in San Pedro Sula at three o’clock in the morning I waited in line in customs and saw two smiling faces peering through the window… Yara and Emily had come to meet me at the airport. What a way to be welcomed back to Honduras! I had to wait in a long torturous line but finally I got to see them. It was so wonderful to have them arrive. They already had a taxi and we headed back to the house. Of course we had to catch up so I didn’t sleep until 5:30 AM! I slept till about noon and then around 2:30 when we get out of school, Dirian and Erika, my friends from Holy Family, came to the house to see me. It was so great to see them. We just sat in the living room chatting about the past three weeks.
Then later on I saw my neighbor friend again, went to the pulperia where they asked me about my vacation and where I’d been… I went to a restaurant on Tuesday and a friend of mine happened to be there… It was just all too wonderful. Excuse the Christian”y” lingo for a minute but God knew that coming back to Honduras was going to be very difficult after my wonderful time at home. I have no doubt that he blessed me for the transition. I have family here, I have friends here, and I have people who care about me and will help me in any situation I come across.
I can do this five more months… piece of cake!

January 18

January 18, 2010
So this will be just a quick entry about a special moment. So I have been trying to make a habit of running at the home every evening when the sun starts going down… trying the key word. I haven’t quite got my rhythm down but I’m doing better than before ;-) Anyway, today I arrived to help Riccy study for her reading exam. We spent about an hour and a half studying… among other things. Then I went outside to start running. I got about two laps in and one of the older girls named Brenda started running with me. I have had a harder time getting to know the older girls not for any reason on their part, just overall anxiety about how to be “cool” to a teenager… that makes me sound really old but its harder than you think!
Anyway, I asked her a little bit while we ran she answered we laughed some. She didn’t talk much but I think it was because she was tired… I was trying to encourage her a little bit but not be too overbearing. I said things like we are almost done you can run this whole workout with me and lets finish quick. I think she liked it though. I was really nervous about finishing running cause I didn’t know what I was going to say to her. But we finished I put my arm around her and told her it goes so much faster with a running partner. She smiled and put her arm around me and we walked around the block again for a cool down. I told her from now on I’m gonna bug her every time I go. Hopefully she is interested in training with me some.
Now that I write this down it seems much less significant… but those of you who know me know that running is very important for me. And, I love to be with people, so to be running and getting to know one of the girls was just perfect for me. Brenda putting her arm around me and giggling about the fact she can’t believe she made it the whole time with me was wonderful. I’m so thankful for these moments.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

January 13

January 13, 2010
Wow, I want to share with you what a wonderful Christmas I had. I can’t really put into words that you will believe but I will highlight a couple special moments here;
The Christmas Eve service at St. Claire’s Episcopal Church in Ann Arbor was just what I needed this Christmas. Beth, the priest, preached about Joseph and Mary’s journey to Bethlehem. Both Mary and Joseph needed to be in a barn with the animals far away from home to be ready to welcome Jesus. After going into some detail about what this meant near the middle of her sermon Beth asked a rhetorical question that threw me for a loop. She asked, “Where is your Bethlehem?” Where do you need to be to Welcome Jesus? She mentioned that maybe it is at work, maybe in your quiet reflective space, maybe is at your favorite rock concert… (I’m doing a terrible job of covering everything in her wonderful sermon but hopefully I’ll express what was so great for me to hear.) Anyway, she also said, “Maybe you have had to travel very far to welcome Jesus.” I lost it, the tears came flowing. Now mind you they were happy tears! I suddenly had this huge realization that I was in my Bethlehem and ready and eager to welcome Jesus back into my life. The hard work of school in Honduras became a distraction to me where life had become a whirlwind of coping mechanisms. I needed to travel a long way home to be with the people who love me and know me for who I truly am. There in that ocean of love, I could welcome Jesus, and remind myself why what I am doing here in Honduras is soooo important. Since hearing this sermon I feel as if I was a young pop-eye cartoon that suddenly ate a lot of spinach and my muscles just popped (no pun intended) out of my arms! Unfortunately my muscles haven’t actually grown as big as pop-eyes but I do have this overwhelming sense of I can do this! Six months isn’t that long and Honduras isn’t that bad! I don’t know if Beth thought she had a good sermon or not this Christmas… But I don’t think I’ll ever forget it. And, I know its after Christmas but I think its worth asking you… Where is your Bethlehem?
Ok here are some wonderful moments I had with family;
~Every single moment with my new nephew Asher was unforgettable. He looks into my eyes and gives me this little grin that just makes my heart stop. What a beautiful happy baby he is!
~One early morning in pajamas, I was laying on the couch with Dash in my arms and we sang the alphabet and the Wheels on the Bus. It was a short-lived moment, but one that I truly cherish.
~Emmanuel and I gave a drum and guitar concert for Mama Xan and Mongi. It was a very special moment for me because it felt like the first time I was actually playing with Emmanuel rather than just entertaining. I had a blast!
~Xan and Kevin took Mongi and I to a Pistons game and we had an absolute blast. I told my dad later that it felt like Mongi and I were just going to a basketball game with College friends. I hardly even realized we had a two year old and a four month old along with us. I hardly felt like I was tagging along with my older sister and her family. I think maybe that is what love is, when babies feel like close friends and not just burdens. (That may sound rough but you know you have all thought it in your babysitting years right?)
~At Nelleke and Mike’s house we had a Christmas eve/Grandpa Rick’s Birthday dinner. They made absolutely delicious savory crepes. I could go on and on about the yummy crepes but that wasn’t what made this night so special. The most wonderful thing about it was to be sitting in a cheery Christmas beautifully lit room with so many of the people that I love. We had great conversation. I felt, and feel, so blessed to have a family that loves and appreciates each other so much.
~Another favorite time of mine was with Mongi at Xan and Kevin’s house. One of the first days of vacation we sat near the Christmas tree and drank tea. We didn’t talk about anything very noteworthy (to be honest I don’t even remember what we talked about) but I do know that after this sitting around the tree tea time, I felt like Christmas time had finally begun for me. I could start enjoying the season.
~The most relaxing and rejuvenating moments of my vacation happened and my father’s house. We saw two movies, did a jig-saw puzzle, and had one of my favorite meals, ENCHILADAS! It was wonderful to just completely shut off my mind and enjoy being free of responsibilities.
~The most inspiring moment of my whole vacation was being at my mama’s ordination. Wow! I didn’t know it was possible to have so many smiling people on one altar! The joy and delight in the room still chokes me up just thinking about it. It felt as if we all knew this should be happening and we were all so glad it was. I’m so proud of my mom and apparently so are a lot of other people. It was great to meet so many people at St. Paul’s that love her. I felt like a celebrity just being her daughter. She is in a great place, and they are lucky to have her.
These are only a few of the special moments I will not forget of this year’s Christmas. (Especially now that I documented them  ) I was able to see Tara and Audra also which was a great gift also! Thank you family and friends for being a part of these moments!