It's 4am and Heather and I are up watching the Disney version of Annie. Today's jet lag schedule is a big improvement over yesterday's when Heather awoke at 1:30am and stayed awake for the rest of the night and then all day as well. She finally collapsed about 9pm last night.
But the odd hours of jet lag are just inconvenient. It's the heart lag that gets me. This whole thing of changing worlds is huge. Maybe not for everyone. Maybe there are those who move from one place to another without much of a tremor. But that's not how I'm wired.
I should be dehydrated after all the tears I've cried in the last six weeks. The goodbyes have felt endless.
But through the years I have learned to be thankful for the pain of parting. I'd be worried if we breezed casually in and out of the communities we've been immersed in.
On Tuesday afternoon the Triplet boys (www.tripletrock.com
On any other day, if the boys had shown up around 4pm, we would have sat around a pot of tea and a packet of biscuits. But as there wasn't a kettle or cup anywhere in the house, they had driven all the way into Belem to collect fresh pastries from the famous pastry shop that has stood there baking unbelivably tasty Pastel de Nata since 1837. They had plastic cups and cartons of ice tea with them so we had our goodbye tea party with style. When the gate banged shut behind them, our little family stood on the porch and cried.
When our bags were finally closed, we walked though the empty house and then stopped in the living room for a thank you prayer. We thanked God for the good years we'd had there, the people who had filled our rooms and our hearts, and for the blessing of His presence that we had enjoyed in this place. Then we headed over to the Uhler house where we ate more good food. More tears when Jasmin, who had joined us there for dinner, left. Ug.
The next morning brought the natural amount of stress that getting five Bordens and their ten suitcases plus one dog to the airport by 6am should produce. After what we thought was careful preparing of all the arrangements to get our wee doggy to California with us, we were pretty annoyed that the supervisor told us Heathrow would not allow her to travel on to LA from London because they would feel her specially purchased crate was too small. Major frustration and hassles! God bless Marty and Carey for taking Charlotte home with them and promising to go get her a still larger travel kennel and ship her off to us ASAP.
More tears again as we clutched this precious family. Six years of teaming with the Uhlers has left us deeply bonded and extremely fond of each other. It's almost impossible to imagine daily life without them.
The flight to London was uneventful. The five hour lay-over, long and boring. The flight to LA was more of the same.
And with that bit of air travel, our world changed.
We were collected into the arms of family and safely delivered to clean, comfy beds. Still, the U.S. is familiar and foreign to us. It is confusing and comforting, attractive and not so attractive, easy and very difficult all at once.
On the continuing adventure, we are thankful for the shelter of my parents home. We seem to always need this half-way house before we dive into the United States. It is, for us I believe, something very like Lewis' Wood Between the Worlds.