Thursday, July 5, 2012

A tough trade off

being present…..touch….so much more aware of the power of meaningful touch….hugs of family and friends who have weathered storms shared joys and pains…Niger is full of joy and pains and I am enjoying some deep and rich relationships where I enjoy a hug no matter how sweaty, but one HUGE trade off of living abroad is leaving our families/ friends and learning to love a whole new group of people and culture….while we are in the states, I have enjoyed being  with people who I have not seen…..something so powerful about seeing my 100 year old Grandma and just having her sit there and STARE in my eyes, like she is drinking in me being present….deep belly laughs, I mean laughing until I CRY with my sis in law and just laughing and laughing with great friends in our favorite cafe….something I can only truly feel the depth of being present. It just feels like when people hug me, it is longer and harder like they are string it up when I am not present. Then there is a pull, Josh posted about a recent CURE clinic in Niger and my heart was drawn there…I just love being present there too….believe me I get and give plenty of hugs in Niger whether it is from Nigerien children at the hospital or the k/1 class that I subbed in or Marie’s precious school or our CURE team (although, there are many more kisses). I am so thankful for what I am experiencing really, the joys and pains make for such a rich and rewarding life. I WILL LIVE and truly be PRESENT wherever I may go…..showing people how much they mean to me as well as Jesus…..

a stroke of the cheek …..a pat on  the head….a bear hug …..kisses on the cheeks…..tickles….. a hand shake …….looking deep into the eyes of an old woman (whether it be my Grandma or one of the my old Nigerien women I may meet)……

Means so much more than we will ever know…..valuing & loving people, in all shapes, sizes, ages, languages etc… ..