Monday, October 12, 2009

goodbyes to friends, hello new chapter

this week was full of goodbyes. i suppose it began by visiting my home church in campbellsville. then moorehead, ky to spend some precious last moments with sara, a dear friend of mine. my last 3 nights at UK hospital were very eventful. i was showered with generosity, kind words, good food. i even got a cookie cake that said "jokes" on it and a necklace reminding me to "be the change i want to see in the world" and gifts of tylenol and toothbrushes that will hopefully help some cameroonian soon to have headache relief and a brighter smile. saturday morning i was taken out for breakfast by some of the girls at work. it seems so surreal that i have to say goodbye to these women who've been such a joy to work with and know. the ladies of 5th floor at UK have taught me so much about caring for patients, serving people, and providing great medical care. i don't know what i'll do without having them by my side as excellent resources and friends! saturday night it really hit me that i was leaving. i think my heart broke a little bit, watching old friends go and sensing the finality of my moments. i've been so blessed to have such amazing friends this last year. sunday night my church prayed for me. it was really special hearing their words. i've learned so much about love and faith from these people. i've never known such a simple and kind community. they've really challenged me to be good to people, good to the planet, and to live faithfully and patiently.

my drive away from lexington tonight was a little lonely. i felt like a person who was choosing an experience instead of relationships. i could see the ways people might feel abandoned. it's not like that though. the people that have been in my life thus far have shaped me and inspired me in so many ways. i suppose this is my thank you note to them. all of them.

as for this next chapter of my life, i can hardly contain my excitement. i get to share all the things that have been shared with me. i get to give back a little. i feel like i'm about to fly a little bit. and while i'm sure my heart will break even more when i have to say goodbye to my family, i can only look forward with long awaited anticipation.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

8 days

really it's like 7 days and 4 hours because we have to leave so early on the 15th. i drove to visit a friend yesterday. we went out for wings and a couple drinks. i just want to spend as much time as i can with the people i love.
i have the next week piled in my mind. i have so many things to think about.
saturday i'm going to try to come here again to visit this friend. she and i are very close.
i need to think about getting an adapter/converter for my camera battery while in africa.
i need a case to wear under my clothes to hide my money in.
i will speak at church on sunday about my trip.
i will work tonight tomorrow and friday, saying goodbye to the girls i've spent the majority of my time work anyway.
i will go home on monday and leave on thursday morning early.
i will say goodbye.
i will cry.

it's so crazy that i really get to go. i'm so excited. i hope i do a good job. i hope i'm useful. i hope i don't forget to listen. i hope i learn so much. i hope the doctor and i get along well. i hope my camera doesn't get stolen. i hope it's fresh. i hope it's what i think it might be.

Friday, October 02, 2009


My little sister's sitting next to me, making a purse out of a piece of paper...all dressed in pink. She woke up this morning and as she stood in front of a mirror 4 times her size brushing her near-white hair she softly remarked, "I'm wearing pink" and made a content little smirk. Now she asks me my favorite color several times before she assumes that "you" means "red." I see her writing my name in red crayon surrounded by hearts.
I'm leaving her soon.

I spent a lot of time with the family this weekend. My other little sister who's smart and witty and completely loving, let me lay my head on her belly and she brushed my hair with her fingers til I fell asleep two nights ago. I'm gonna miss her so much.

And my mom. Always sure and usually right.

And my little brother, eager to help and totally kind. He usually asks me if he could cook me an omelet in the morning and always asks to help carry heavy boxes.
My oldest younger sister who's going through the teens and seems pissed off a lot of the time, but is smart and beautiful and doesn't always know but then knows it all too well.....

I'm just going to miss them. I was a little sad about leaving for the weekend.. just one weekend. I've cried a couple times just leaving them after spending a couple days when i'd see them again in the same...
I know it's so selfish. They're such a comfort to me. This last year when things were rough, or when I felt upset about work, or I made some bad choice, or I just plain missed them I would come home and depending on the hour I would knock on the door to my mom's pleased "theresa!" and crawl into bed between two huggy warm bodies and sleep until kid laughter or dog licks woke me up. I just enjoy being around people who live and love so purely and simply with no hidden motives, no stipulations or requirements. They've really taught me a lot about love.

All I know is that if nothing else does, memories of them will always keep me warm. Hopefully I'll be able to remember everything