Asking God why I was being the way I was, He reminded me - it’s the goodbyes. From an early age my life has been full of them. I was thinking through the best friends I have had. A year with one in this school, a year with one in that school, 3 years with this one, 4 years with that one before a goodbye came. Due to a move, due to a change in schools or to life just moving on and paths going separate ways.
The first best friend I remember loosing was the one I had the longest. She and I met when I was in 2nd and she in 3rd. We bonded almost immediately. Although we rarely talked about it, we both shared the experience of loosing our daddies to an accident. We both had large blended families and we just ‘got’ each other.
We went to a small Christian school where we were in the same classroom until she was in 7th and I was in 6th. And that was the last year we were best friends. The next year I was pulled out to homeschool and our lives just parted. The weekend sleepovers started dying off, phone calls went days longer, until it was months before we had spoken.
This trend has extended from childhood to adulthood and the goodbyes continue. College friends and others from all the different cities and states and countries where John and I have lived. God knew that He had called me to missionary life long before I was even born. He knew I needed the ‘classroom’ time of goodbyes as a child before He put me on the 'field assignment’ as an adult. He knew that I would need to know what it felt like as a child so that I could know what my kiddos are going through.
Watching my kids constantly going through goodbyes - this is the part of missions that i do NOT like, but who does? Abigail and Rebekah had a class project this week. They had to pick a song about their life. Abi’s song:
Still crabby? Maybe a little. I’m missing those that I have had to say goodbye to recently; Katie who went home to be with Jesus 7 weeks ago today and the McCanns who just returned permanently to the States. However, I am thanking God for friends that He has given me here in La Ceiba; my Bible Study Group Ladies, one of whom I get to spend lots of time with on our 5:30am walks (and who reminds me ALOT of my 2nd-6th grade best friend and who I have ALOT in common with!). Lastly, I am anticipating with great joy the ‘hellos’ that are to come soon; the return of the Pettengills from furlough and the arrival of our new teammate Shannon.