June 05, 2018

the best surprise...

Last August marked our 25th wedding anniversary, but in our true fashion, we celebrated a little before and some after, and on the actual day, we ordered pizza and stayed in. {I'm hoping to share a little more about that later...} But in the before category, came this card from my parents...
It took me a moment to process what she had written in the card...
Mbegu. My sweet adopted elephant at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust... in Kenya.

Africa? Africa!
I hid my face in my hands and sobbed. There was no hint that this surprise was on the horizon, and there were simply no words for the emotion that overcame my whole self. I looked up at Eric and noticed a couple of tears roll from his eyes. Thank you doesn't begin to express the singing of my soul.

We are really going back to Africa. One month from today. It had become a distant hope in my heart, one I didn't quite have the courage to dream. But as we have endured this challenging fall and winter, the whisper of Africa has promised us that something wonderful is lingering just beyond the bend.

As I read back through my memories, I realized that from the moment we arrived {7 years, 10 months, 1 week, and 1 day ago} it was a constant balance of love and fear. Love for the dream, the land, the people, and a fear of ... everything. Of course, as love won over completely, the fear of never retracing those steps was the one that settled deepest in my heart.

This time I vow to leave the fear behind.
I will leave the fear behind and embrace the beauty of what I know... that every day will be a new adventure; that there is never a time that God doesn't want me to grow; that kindness is always the answer; to dance in the face of fear brings joy; that even if this is the last time I travel to Africa, I will always, always, carry it in my heart and soul.
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