I walked around in a bit of a daze today. Some days just feel more real than others. Today I had to say goodbye to my Grandma who is leaving to visit family in Michigan and won’t be back before I leave for Thailand. It’s just a bit surreal saying goodbye to people that you know you won’t see for a very long time.
Leaving happens in stages I guess, but each step makes it a bit more real. Sunday I moved out of my beloved little apartment with my beloved roommate. We are both leaving on adventures but she is leaving a bit earlier than I (she leaves for Honduras on Saturday) and we had to vacate our sanctuary of a place. Thats really what it was… our quirky little corner place with the wood paneled walls, disco ball hanging in the corner, and the french doors and deck space to die for. I wouldn’t have traded it for anything. Not to mention the incredibly fun roommate that came along with it. We had more fun together this past year than I had had in a very long time, God sent she was.
We also got the privelage of living next door to two other people we dearly love who are leaving on a new adventure of their own. Seems like there is a lot of that going on around here. Last night, we sat on the floor of their empty apartment and played board games together… our last little get together as the “new song commune,” as I affectionally called our two houses.
Leaving that place placed another drop into the reality pool and dropping Jessica off at the airport on Saturday and driving Brian & Christie to LA on Wednesday will add another whole cup to it.
But I must move forward.
This time last year, I remember feeling very alone, it had been a long, painful year. But as I look back on this past year following that, all I can see is God’s incredible provision. He filled me to overflowing and I know this more now than ever: community is key to being able to live out God’s Kingdom to its fullest.
I have been reading up on Thailand and the culture shock I’ll be facing and such. It’s pretty scary stuff, culture shock. I mean, some people just don’t handle it well at all. They retreat into a little bubble just counting the days until they can leave never being able to appreciate anything around them.
I think culture shock is just a form of loneliness though. This inability to relate to anything or anyone around them, I remember feeling a form of that for a very long time. But declaring it a form of loneliness makes it less scary to me, because I have defeated loneliness, or rather, God has. And I know that if He brought me out of it once, He will bring me out of it again. He taught me that you can find community in the most unlikely of places. I used to fight community with people that I thought I would not be able to immediately relate to. But now I know better. Community doesn’t always come in the form that you would assume and sometimes you have to work at it. But boy is it worth it.
I guess that is what I am excited most about in moving forward into this new world, meeting my new community and seeing how God will provide for me there just as He has provided for me everywhere else. Good-bye’s are only the beginning of the coming experience.