this is returning.

Not simple and all at once completely simple- with all of that, I am actually returned to Colombia. I am here. I cried my way onto a plane on August 17th, waved goodbye to familiar, and to my complete bewilderment ended up in another land of familiarity. That was a pleasant surprise, and I do think it eased the hard.

How did I end up in the United States for almost three months, well, there was a lot going on and I partially was not at all emotionally ready to leave and right before I bought my ticket back for July 7th, the Lord slid a opportunity for more time in the States right into my lap. The summer camp I’d committed three of my summers to called and asked if I would spend five more weeks in the States to serve as a counselor. It was enticing. After intentional prayer and discernment, I called and gave my yes. There were times where I slightly regretted it, but overall, the friendships I made were completely worth it. It was exhausting and completely challenging, but it’s also a mission field I have felt tugging on my heart over and over again. I met a girl, a new counselor, from the Czech Republic. Her entire faith challenged my own walk. There were so many times where I found her sitting outside the cabin, after hitting a wall, where she would just be crying out to God, pleading for help and wisdom. Her dependence on the Lord was so beautiful and inspiring. There were also a few past relationships that got to take a hit at some slight reconciliation, which was truly grand. Every year I ask myself if I could do it again, and my flesh screams no, but my heart for all those tinies I’ve been able to grow relationships with screams “how could I not”. After camp I hung around home for a few extra days and then with a bittersweet heart, I hugged my people, squeezed my momma once last time for awhile, balled my eyes out and flew to Medellin. [Enjoy a bajillion captures of my time in the States] 

And now, here I am. I’ve been here for a whole week now and I haven’t cried once since I’ve unpacked my bags, which is a much better transition then last time, am I right? It’s still not easy to be 2,000+ miles away from the people who hold your heart so tightly. Monday was a Colombian holiday, so I did not get to hop back into my regular routine until Tuesday. Now I’m three days in and loving it just as much as last time around. My tinies are getting bigger; some have even aged out of Sala Cuna!

My jobs now revolve around fútbol and promotions of Viento Fresco. The mentorship program I designed finally has enough mentors and will be kicking off mid September. That’s thrilling! One of my favorite things thus far is getting to photograph fútbol, particularly the teenage boys. If they see me at the cancha with my camera out, everything is serious. Within minutes of practice being over, my phone gets flooded with a hurricane of “send me all the pictures”- which is no easy task! I average about eight decent pictures each practice and WhatsApp only allows you to send ten in a message and takes awhile to send just those ten. Geez Louise. Very exciting news is that the fútbol teams have actually started winning! Our girls have the opportunity to fly to another part of Colombia [Cali], in November if they do well in a tournament they’ve already begun competing in. The fútbol program is no longer just some skimpy little club; they are growing and thriving and being a piece of it is exhilarating.

In the mess of feeling far from home, the craziness [and deep love] from being at home, the craziness of camp and life here and now- I have come to deeply love a medley that one of the churches I attend at home created. It often calls me into the presence of the Holy Spirit and calms my wild soul. Here is the link: Willow Creek Holy Spirit Medley. If you a few minutes, I highly recommend it. It’s a lovely composition that some very talented people crafted.

Next up on the block of updates: New Roommate! [Yes, Talie is still here and I greatly enjoy her presence.] New roommate is Emily and we have decided that we our each others adventure soulmates, if that exists? We seem to have the same crazy running through our veins and plan wildness all of the time. Currently, Talie is housesitting, so Emily and I have lots of time to get well acquainted. Our mornings thus far have been nice and slow; rolling out of bed, making coffee, arepas, & fried eggs, then chi chatting about the thoughts in our brains. Slow mornings are one of the things ,my heart delights in. I think I get that from my mama; she sits with tea and toast just about every morning. Hers don’t include chit chat, but I think slowly starting your day is the way to go. It’s like how we turn Jim [the lovely and ancient] BMW on and let him sit a bit before he goes out driving- for a smooth day, you gotta idle for a little pinch. So that’s a good thing.

This is a short little spurt, but I needed something to get me back into writing, as I love it but it takes some time. I’ve been in Colombia for nine days now and I haven’t cried since unpacking on Monday, which is much better than my last transition and although my heart is sad to be away from my beloved tribe, it is rejoicing to be with this side. Bittersweet, to say the least. Also, there’s no fall in Colombia and that’s some bs because fall is the very best.

I’m alive and seemingly thriving [and speaking Spanish].



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