IT'S A LONG ROAD BACK
TO YOU AND YOUR KIN
On Christmas Day we attended a family get-together with a majority of my dad’s family. My dad is one of ten kids, so you can imagine there were lots of aunts, uncles, and cousins to catch up with.
Then, when we headed down south again my maternal grandmother was able to drive to NC and stay for a two-day visit.
I was very aware that my focus on this trip was rest and quality time loving on family. My Father blessed me with great opportunities to share the things I love about China, as well as, the struggles I’ve faced there. This was so important to me. I didn't want to arrive in the States and focus my sharing on only the good or the bad. I was grateful to present an honest portrayal of my new life by providing insight to all the wonderful pieces of life in Qingdao and give specific p—y—r requests for the circumstances I’m finding hardest.
I'M DREAMING OF A WHITE CHRISTMAS
SOMEBODY WAITS FOR YOU
NO MATTER HOW FAR AWAY YOU ROAM
I didn’t think China had worn off on me too much, but found I was wrong multiple times. Every time I went to say thank you I found myself wanting to say “xie xie” instead. I got unbelievably excited every time I saw Asian people.
Oh, and then there was the horrible moment when while trying to bond with my sister and I took her out for lunch at IHOP. I paid with cash and forgot to tip our waitress because tipping is not a thing in China and I haven’t done it for almost 5 months. Hopefully my sister remembered and went back to tip her because that lady was really nice, and I just wasn’t thinking! :(
I am relieved to find myself excited to go back to China, though not quite ready to say goodbye to family yet.
FAST AWAY THE OLD YEAR PASSES
First, the big JC. Thank you to the man whose Father gave me life, purpose, and passion. Thank you to the son who speaks for me and who saved my life. To they third part of their trio, for living within me and speaking into my heart daily. For the challenges they’ve carried me through and the successes they’ve won for me. YOU are why I am here, alive and thriving in Your goodness.
To my mom and dad, thank you for training me up in the way I should go. Though I am not perfect, I am thankful to have a solid foundation beneath my feet and the knowledge that I never walk alone.
To Kelly, thank you for expecting more of me and giving me a reason to continue fighting to be a better version of myself. That girl you expect, she does exist. I hope you meet her and love her one day.
To Timmy, thank you for always going to see Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, and Marvel movies with me. I look forward to our in-depth analysis and discussions after the movies almost more than the movies themselves.
To Nick, thank you for being the best of us. You are so strong, wise, and kind. I want the world for you and I hope that as you head toward your high school graduation you discover that our Father’s plan for you is beyond what you could possibly imagine.
To you, the reader who is walking with me on this journey… Whether you are a stranger who reads this blog, a dear friend who messages me weekly, my extended family, one of my many adoptive family units, a long-lost companion, a person who was in my life for a season, whoever you are... Thank you for being there. Your support and p—y--rs remind me of my Father’s faithfulness and how incredible of an adventure I am on. Thank you a million times over! You are so important to me.