An athlete on a trapeze wanting to switch to the next trapeze has to let go of the current one to reach the next one. For a few seconds the athlete is just suspended in air with nothing to hold on to.
When you leave the culture where you have been serving a term and start home, you also find yourself in the same position. You have left one place, and you are not yet in another. You are not where (and who) you were, but you are not yet where (and who) you will be. There is nothing to hold on to, and you may feel confused and disoriented.
This quote was from an article from “Missionary Care” about missionaries returning home.
As we prepare to fly back to Pennsylvania this weekend, we definitely feel this. The confusion and disorientation of leaving one “home” to go to your old “home”. Ahead of us is the unknown. We don’t know exactly what life will look like and that can be quite unsettling.
We have to leave behind a beautiful village that we’ve fallen in love with. We’ll be leaving one place we love and heading to a home we love and miss. But we’ve changed. Home has changed. Our children will say goodbye to friends this friday and see old friends, friends they have missed, next week.
As we walk through the town for the final time, saying goodbye to the local butcher, the girls that work at the cafe, the sweet teachers from the school, our YWAM community and all of the friends we’ve made over the past 2 years here in Northern Ireland. They will be sorely missed! We will miss the friendly “Hi-ya!” each time we walk past strangers on the street. We will miss our wee village at the foot of the Mourne Mountains.
We appreciate your prayers for our family as we finish our goodbyes and prepare for “welcome home!”
The word “bittersweet” describes how we feel perfectly.
As our 6 year old says; “I’m happy-sad-ish. I’m a little confused.” Me too, buddy, me too.
Bittersweet, how true, so we set our hopes on the sweetness of homecoming.