Tomorrow’s the day! After an entire YEAR, the time has finally come for me to get on the plane and return to my beloved ‘Mama Liberia.’ So much has happened in the twelve months that I have been home. I caught up with old friends and made new ones. I traveled. I moved across the country. I switched jobs…and then did it again…and then again. I lost my Papa to cancer. I walked through a time of deep healing in my heart. I prayed, I fought, I learned, I struggled. I changed—was changed. And because of all that, I feel incredibly prepared (emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually) to handle whatever Liberia may throw at me.
I am eager to see the kids again, to hug them close and talk about life with them. I can’t wait for the singing and dancing, rice and fresh plantains, beautiful sunsets, morning porch times with my journal and a cup of coffee, joyful reunions with friends and teammates. A year is a long, long time…but I think it makes the return even sweeter.
I’ve spent the last week or so soaking up everything America, greedily indulging in all that I will miss once I cross the Atlantic. I just had a warm bath, washed my face, brushed my teeth—all the while aware that I will soon be without running water for the next six months. I’ve eaten my fill of Mexican food, ice cream, and fresh fruits and veggies, and I’ve definitely had my fair share of Starbucks. I’ve managed to make a trip to Target pretty much every day for the past ten days, sometimes just to walk around and marvel at the sheer enormity of stuff. I’ve downloaded new music and updates for my laptop, knowing that I’ll soon be saying goodbye to Wi-Fi (and fast internet in general). And I’m just about ready to crawl into my comfy bed and (hopefully) sleep sweetly under fluffy blankets and on soft pillows—for I know that the Liberian heat and noise will often keep me awake at nights and/or wake me up way too early in the morning.
I’m looking forward to sharing stories and photos with you from my life in Liberia in the coming months, so be sure to check the blog and my Facebook for updated posts. Until then, keep your fingers crossed that all my luggage makes it safe and sound, that I get a good seat (i.e.: one without anyone else in the row so I can curl up and sleep) on the plane, that customs goes smoothly, and that I manage to make it through about 24 hours of travel!