Hello my dear friends and family!
I have been horribly negligent with my blog as of late and I apologize for not keeping you better appraised of my time here in the Philippines recently. As you may be aware, my time in the Philippines will close at the end of September and after travelling for several weeks I will return to the U.S. in October. Given this time-frame I now have about five months in the Peace Corps and I cannot believe how fast my service has gone. I have been wonderfully blessed throughout my service and making the decision to join Peace Corps was the best decision for me. I have been given the opportunity to develop a life here, a life that I love, and I am incredibly grateful for this experience. The friends I have made are beautiful and the work I get to be a part of is challenging and rewarding.
However, the thought of returning home is truly exciting. I think it is currently appealing because summer is in full swing here in the Philippines – which means waking up in the middle night sweating so much that I have to take a shower before I can fall back to sleep. In these moments I dream of being back home enjoying an air-conditioned home. On the other hand, returning home brings forth short waves of trepidation. I have learned to just embrace these feelings and not panic because I know God will provide above and beyond my expectations; but they still approach me when least expected.
I also do not really like the idea of leaving here. Leaving my friends, my work, my life. It is intimidating to realize that what I have built here will have to be done again when I move back home – living here is my current comfort zone and disrupting it will not be easy. There are many conflicting emotions: being ready for change but also not ready to leave, excited to go home but forlorn about leaving, thrilled for good ice cream but distraught about saying goodbye to mangoes, crazed to start building my tiny house but nervous to leave My Refuge House.
Living abroad and embracing a cross cultural lifestyle has been rewarding beyond expectation and I cannot recommend it enough. This is not to say that I am actually good at it, but it is an amazing growing experience. Thankfully, I have a full schedule of work and fun before coming home to keep me present in my current pursuits. It is incredibly easy to live in the future, constantly thinking and planning for how things will be, and this is a trap I fall into easily. However, I must remind myself that I do, in fact, still love my life here, and it helps me to come back to the present.
As I enter into my last five months of service and plan a short excursion for afterwards I ask that you pray for guidance and a smooth transition back to the U.S. Five months seems like an abundance of time but it is bound to go by as quickly as my previous months here and I pray they are just as beautiful and fruitful.
Much love everyone!