End Reflection

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Our time here is coming to an end and it’s hard to believe. We came expecting to be here no less than 6 months, thinking it would be closer to a year or longer. Our house in Colorado is leased out to renters for 6 months and we committed to 6 months of rent here in Tanzania.

So leaving just after 2 months isn’t anything close to what we planned. That has been the theme of this experience though, nothing has gone as planned. It’s painful, but it’s ok because we trust it has gone as God planned and someday we will look back on this season and understand.

But, for now we are deep in this season and continue to feel the weight and grief this season holds, and man is it heavy.

Now that the oldest is settled in school there really isn’t much left for us to do here. We can spend time with the twins, however we do not feel that is best for them or us. We don’t want them to get used to us being around or start bonding with us since we will no longer be adopting them. It is also very emotionally taxing on us whenever we see them as it reminds us of the loss.

The twins will be staying in the orphanage until they’re old enough for school. Their father is not ready to assume full-time care for them so that is why they will stay at the orphanage. If you read my post about the first day of school, I hope you could sense that the orphanage is a god-filled home with care-takers and kids that love the boys and each other so well. We are thankful they can stay there for now.

We have a few days left living in Africa. It has been quite the experience. Though we’ve visited here multiple times before, this time was so much different. We've had a car, a house, a local phone, basically everything we needed to live here not as tourists.

From day one, when we had to find our way home in the dark, driving ourselves for the first time, we have had to fully immerse in this culture. It has been exciting and fun, as well as exhausting and stressful. We’ve learned our way around the town and know names of the different regions. Things that were once unknown and disorienting are now familiar.

We’ve found our favorite coffee shops and local places to eat and we’ve had access to awesome running trails. We’ve had flat tires, been stopped by the police multiple times, and have bartered our way through the local markets.

Derrick has mostly mastered driving here amidst the chaos. His favorite part about the driving is getting stopped by the police and being passed by crazy drivers that fly by you just to slow down and turn in front of you. Actually I think that’s the part he will miss the least...

We’ve enjoyed the different climate here and the down pours of rain that are heavier than any rain we’ve seen before. We’ve been amazed how the streets quickly turn to rivers, yet just as quickly dry back up. You would never know inches of rain were just rushing down.

We’ve gotten to experience an International church, city church, and Masai church, all very different, some very long, and all enjoyable. We’ve experienced what it feels like to be a foreigner; To not know our way around, to not be able to communicate with everyone we need, to not know what other people are saying right in front of us, to look different, to stand out because of our skin color, and to not fit in.

We’ve lived with much less than we do in the States and adjusted to different foods and cooking. We’ve learned that when we find a kind of beans we like at the store we should buy multiple bags because the store may not restock for weeks.

We’ve had many days of a love/hate relationship with living here. We begin to feel like we really enjoy living here and could do this much longer, and then we get in the car and get stopped and questioned by police for no reason so we begin to dislike living here. We’ve loved the culture and been bitter towards the culture. It has been an experience we will never forget and forever be thankful we had.