Haiti

I remember  New York.

Finally free of the airport, we had walked out the doors and set our feet on American soil.

It was raining, and my teammates were crowded under the awning as we waited for our shuttle. Haiti’s February was far warmer and dryer, and we shivered in the embrace of our West Coast. Yet I couldn’t resist. With only a tank top, I stepped out…

I had developed a tan after a mere few hours working in the Port-au-Prince sun, and I payed dearly for it. When I arrived back at the house, people stared at me in surprise.  My skin, which was pasty Oregon white before I left, was dark and sun kissed, glowing. Even I was taken off guard by the face that looked back at me in the bathroom mirror. I had worn sunscreen to no avail, and no matter how exotic I looked, it didn’t change the fact that every inch of skin that had been exposed felt as if it had been scalded in hot water.

That night, I sat in the dinning room, silent, watching some of the girls getting their hair cornrowed by the Haitian workers who helped out with the preschool, waiting for my burns to calm down. Later that evening,  I remember curling up on a leather couch with my Bible, feeling a good sort of tired.

And the other things I remember will always be numerous…

The mosquitoes that ate me alive.

Crawling into cupboards to wash out rat feces.

Giant spiders that ran faster than my eyes could track.

The fear of Cholera in every shower,  making sure none of the water reached inside my mouth.

The deep gutters that held a soup that looked far more mysterious and dangerous than the stuff in those blue portable bathrooms we rent for concerts and parks.

Carrying buckets of rocks on my shoulder down a hill with the guys; my arms crying out in exhaustion, but my pride and determination pushing me forward.

Sunscreen. So much sunscreen.

The aroma of the bakery as we waited outside for our bread.

The outfits we had brought with us from the States, and the sight of all the little shirts, skirts, pants and shoes lined up on a big dinning room table, name tags on each one.

Dressing the preschoolers in their clean, new outfits, and watching them smile and smooth down the soft, new fabrics…Praying that their parents wouldn’t sell the clothes for food.

Sunsets, a glorious backdrop to a landscape ravished by heat and and heartache.

The value of clean water.

A sea of beautiful, dark complexions.

Colorful Tap taps and run down trucks weighed down almost to the breaking point with passengers.

The smell of diesel running through the exhausts of engines that require regular gasoline, and of burning trash on every street.

The men and women walking through the dirt-packed roads in immaculate pressed white suites.

Being able to hear Haitian Christians singing praises in church from over half a mile away.

And that moment you realize they’re singing of happy things because they are truly already familiar with brokenness and suffering. They have no desire to cry in order to feel spiritual.

The sweetest mangoes spritzed with lime.

Washington apples in the local grocery store.

A people indifferent to their own poverty.

Cool tile floors.

Oil based paint, and my subsequent appreciation for latex based ones.

Workers at the missionary’s house sitting beside you as you’re dipping your feet in the pool, showing you their cherished English vocabulary book.

Looking into the face of long term missions, the many hardships and trials, yet also appreciating the eternal vision. This, too, shall pass.

Raw sugarcane.

Leaving the city, a place where traffic is at a constant gridlock, a mile taking an hour,  and relishing the wind in your face as the truck drives a remarkable and unbelievable 50 mph.

Ragaman. An energy drink that looks like an Asian beverage, tastes almost like an apple Jolly Rancher, and was initially unimpressive. By the end we all considered it the most delicious drink we’d ever had.

A bottle of Haitian vanilla extract. Pampered Chef: 18$ Local Haitian market: 2$

The off-tune version of the Titanic theme emanating sadly from the water trucks, heralding their arrival dawn to dusk.

Arriving to white walls, and leaving them yellow.

A small, quiet child crawling into your lap.

Toppled buildings, men separating caved roofs and toppled cement walls over a year after the earthquake.

The New Jerusalem, a desert city of tents and stones reaching as far as my eyes could see.

Handing out our water and snacks, feeling like we gave a man a fish for a day…

 

I stood there at the JFK airport, in the rain, feeling it sooth the hurting and raw outward part of me that had felt the country deeply. I wanted it’s comfort more than anything else. I remember leaving a country that was not my home behind; two boys running after our truck as we departed our last work site,  stopping eventually because we were going to fast to follow any longer, waving as we drove farther and father away. I easily boarded a plane, and left behind a place people have given their life to escape. And I understood that I had just experienced a metaphor more powerful and simple than any other I had been confronted with before, one that reflected my future:

As I had left Haiti, I had also looked back over this whole world, and I knew one day, near or far, I would leave all of it behind, and I wondered what I would do with the time I had left.

I wondered how many I would take with me.

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Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana

I’m tempted to consider 2013 as somewhat unremarkable. I lived day by day, and all those days steadily turned into more considerable measurements, like weeks and months. Sometimes I stop and have to force myself to remember some of my adventures:

  • I became a full time nanny for two girls. The job was never difficult, but there was no margin for error. I would often listen to them both crooning along with my music in the backseat of the car, and I would be overwhelmed with both the privilege and the weight of the amenability placed upon me. I was also paid to do things like paint toenails and go swimming.

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  • I traveled to Las Vegas, and hit up a few of the famous attractions, like Ceasar’s Palace. My Uncle treated me to a fantastic little upscale gem of a restaurant called Noodles, with authentic Asian food/soups that tasted perfectly balanced and divine. I sampled my first ever shrimp in my perfect bowl of pho, and yes, I liked it. I drove two hours south and made it to my old roommate’s wedding, meeting up with another roommate, Nicole, in Kingman, AZ, and it was absolutely perfect. Her mother had died of cancer only a few years before, so Jessica paid the perfect tribute by having her mom’s dress altered to wear down the isle. It was almost as flawless as her.

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  • I visited the Grand Canyon. It’s so vast you lost depth perception (woah, I sense a powerful metaphor there…). And yes. I wore a dress and sandals to the Canyon. The only think I anticipated traversing were well maintained cement paths. I packed for Vegas and a wedding. You can imagine my shame as my uncle helped me down cliffs and rocks because, you know, IT’S THE GRAND CANYON. THERE WAS HIKING. GO FIGURE. But I’m not upset about it. Not at all. I could only stare wistfully as a group of backpackers we had sat by on an overlook continued their descent into the canyon. Some day, my friends. Some day.

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Canyon Pointers. #grandcanyon #arizona

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  • While I was Vegas, I finished reading To Kill a Mockingbird. All credit goes to my friend Emily for insisting upon applying myself in succumbing to this famous work of literature. After I finished, I had to take some time and process the whole thing. It was such a delicious book.

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  • I actually got out of the house and enjoyed some of the attractions Seattle has to offer. I took roommate number 3, Rebekah, downtown. First photo is the first Starbucks, and second is the Chihuly glass museum. I was prepared to be unimpressed, but the sculptures were staggering. I was completely won over. Next time you find yourself in the Emerald City, stop and take a look.

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  • Oh yeah, and I totaled my first car. I won’t show you a picture of the metal heap that was once my primary mode of transportation. Instead, I’ll share a photo of the license and registration I purchased a mere three days before. I had been driving with Oregon plates illegally for a year. I finally drag my but into the licensing agency, and whammy.

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  • Remember me telling you about the car accident? Will that occurred 2 days before my little sister’s wedding. While driving to it, actually. I was the Maid of Honor, and it was awesome.

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  • I assisted in teaching Sunday school for the moth of August at my church. Not only did we read out of my favorite book (the Bible) and partake in my favorite snack (goldfish), we made some pretty sweet crafts, too. I give you Goliath:

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  • And speaking of church- I attended my first ever Women’s Retreat. I almost wussed out, but two ladies from my church agreed that we should request each other as roommates, so it was settled. It was good for me to be immersed in so much feminine company. The lovely lady sitting beside me is none other than Emily, the same woman who convinced me to read To Kill a Mockingbird.

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  •  Weddings, weddings, weddings. I think I’ll go hide under a table until everyone is done getting married. And if that savored strongly of bitterness, it’s all for show. I love weddings, and I would rather splurge on a ticket to be a part of a friend’s happiest day than to wander alone on some tropical beach. And that’s what I did. Seattle to Orlando took all night, I felt like death warmed over, but it was all worth it when Christi hugged me, warmed up a bowl of delicious soup her fiance, Mikey, had whipped up, and sat and chatted as he steeped me a much needed cup of tea. It was worth it to hold onto more Ecola friends who had only just moved to Georgia, and who’s wedding Christi and I had been in the year before. It was worth it, all of it, just for these moments:

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  • And while I was in Florida, I ate my very first Chick-Fil-A! And now I experiencing a piercing and constant dissatisfaction in the chick-Fil-A-less land which is the Pacific Northwest.

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  • I went to my first ever baseball game with Sydney, and the Mariners lost. But that hardly mattered; to me, it was all about the experience. I ate an overpriced hotdog (denied myself a beer), sat on uncomfortable metal benches, and inquired incessantly about the rules. I think I’d like to do it all over again, too.

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  •  Someone handed me this while walking to the bank one day. I think it speaks for itself. I still have the dollar, too, and I don’t think I’ll ever spend it.

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  • I wore this trusty companion out this summer. I’m currently searching for a replacement. We’ve come far together, through thick and thin, the highs and lows. It rested so comfortably in my hands that just holding it open before me served as an anchor, it’s weight and texture was so reassuringly familiar.

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  • I learned how to milk goats. That pail of milk down there? That’s mine. Well it was the goat’s and mine. I feel like gaining a skill such as this one is significant.

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  • I made some quality friends. The best, really. We met for a walk around Greenlake, and I parked on the wrong end. I figured I’d just walk to meet them, being ignorant of the fact that the trail is almost 3 miles around, which meant I ended up walking a mile and a half before I reached them. And, get this, I was wearing The Sandals. You know, the very same ones I wore to the Canyon. In this picture I was smiling to keep myself from crying. Seriously though, I love these ladies. Left to right: Jen, Hilary, Myself, Emily.

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  • I took many selfies with cats.

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  • I hung out a lot with these goobers. My sister and her husband have provided me with many adventures.

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  • And I said goodbyes:

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It’s A Real Place

I decided to take the scenic route home, today.

On my way from Greenlake to Rainier Beach, I passed through downtown Seattle, China Town, Columbia City, and Hilman City. Some things I passed on the way that  grabbed my attention:

The man, the legend, Mark Driscoll

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Before I moved to Seattle, I had no idea who this guy was. After I moved to the Emerald City, a friend asked if we could go to Mark’s church for good Friday service, and my reaction was “Mark who?” I’ve never been one to spend time and energy searching out contemporary preachers and evangelists; Joel Olsteen’s smile was like swallowing a mouthful of sugar, and something about Rob Bell’s eyes and manner of speech made me uneasy– there was something going on behind them that didn’t quite match up, like he was making something too easy and complicated at the same time. And most of the time there’s a reason why men grow to be famous. Every time I sit in service at a mega church, I wonder to myself, alright. What kind of white bread are we going to be served today? 

But I’ve since learned more about him, and even though I’m not entirely on board with the massive scale church model, having had some first hand run-ins with MH burnouts, he’s surprisingly grounded. Sure, it’s dangerous when thousands of people gather to witness one man preach and not because they’re seeking opportunities to serve their fellow sisters and brothers in Christ, to build the Church body, but somehow he wins you over. Maybe it was the t-shirt he sported with the virgin Mary that said, “Mary is my Homegirl,”  or perhaps it’s his evident sensitivity, respect and love for women, or even his boldness to hold men and husbands accountable for their relationship with their families as spiritual leaders. And then, most importantly, there’s the powerful command he has of the Scriptures. And maybe it’s the weathered quality of his words, like he’s been and seen it all- I live only blocks away from his childhood neighborhood, and I understand his stories. I get the rawness, the depravity.

As I passed by the library,

Danger, Will Robinson.

Danger, Will Robinson.

choosing not go in because pretty much every visit ultimately turns into a 40 dollar overdue fines collections envelope on my doorstep, I was suddenly presented with this epic building:

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On the side is the permanent inscription, First United Methodist Chuch. New banners now proclaim the installation of Mars Hill.

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Stunning, is it not? Let’s pray that the worship offered inside is as beautiful as the vessel which contains  it.

So I continued on what turned out to be an epic journey. Sometimes I forget why I always take I5, and then I remember- it’s so I don’t grow old and senile in my car singing Killing me Softly with the Fugees. That’s why.

Next was China town. Shops full of fruits and vegetables, rice cookers, whole roasted ducks hanging by their necks, french pastries,  dilapidated used tire centers, lucky waving cats, Buddhas, statues and idols reflecting bright red and gold stacked to cover the window from flow to ceiling. My friend, Patrick, and I went out to eat Pho, pronounced ‘fuh’ (I know), in the international district a few months back. It looked sketch, like most places in Chinatown (there’s a pet store in an ally I’ve always wanted to check out), but it had gotten good reviews. It was delicious.

Literally the biggest image I could find.

Literally the biggest image I could find.

Patrick, who lives in Portland (a place Mark Driscoll claims is so white it probably only sells white bread), remarked, “I was walking up the street to find this place, and I realized I was the only white person I here.” That made me laugh. Rainier Valley is home to the most ethnically diverse community in the US, and I’ve enjoyed living in a place that helps curb my hunger and anxiousness to travel the world.

And another reason I love living where I live? Why, it’s because I can always satiate my cravings for marijuana.

Healing herbs? Sounds wonderful.

Healing herbs? Sounds wonderful.

I can’t tell you how many dispensaries are littered throughout Seattle, how many I passed on my way home, because they have become as the Israelites; like the stars, you cannot number them. Heck, there’s one half a mile from my house. I can start out my mornings with a run to the pot house and be back with brownies before breakfast. And in case you ever need a guide to pick out the best ones, Seattle’s here to help:

At last, a guide.

At last! A guide.

Like we’re not easy going enough. The last thing the Pacific Northwest needs is pot. One of my profs from Bible school was from Pennsylvania, and he flat out told us he was put off by the chill, ‘hang out dude’ attitude of the West coast. Where he was from people had things to do, and they did them. Apparently we just don’t have enough things to do over here. Obama can put that on the top of his check list: “Give West-coasters something to do.” Maybe I’ll write him a letter about that.

Denoting or relating to meat prepared as prescribed by Muslim law.

Denoting or relating to meat prepared as prescribed by Muslim law.

Oh, Halaal markets. Buildings the size of closets packed with everything you need for life.

I see these places and things while driving down a street called Martin Luther King Jr. Way, because there’s a large enough African American population for that name to actually mean something. A far cry from the bland Corvallis I grew up in, or from the entire state of Oregon, for that matter. Seriously. Where I live there are a lot of Muslims. A lot of people from places like Ethiopia and Somalia. One of the guards at the museum I worked at was from Somalia, pressed to leave country of birth his because of the escalating violence. When we (museum) catered for big companies like Microsoft, we’d always end up having to prepare separate Kosher and Halaal meals. Men wear tunics that reach past their knees, women cover all but their face and hands. Sometimes all I want to do is pull over in my car and tell them how they can be covered by the perfect love of Jesus.

I’ve enjoyed Ethiopian cuisine, and it was quiet tasty — but the injera made it’s presence known in my stomach. *sigh* Bread, you coy thing. You’re always keeping yourself just out of my reach.

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Yes, please. I’ll take all of it.

And soon I was on the home stretch, and to my left I spied a place Rainier Beach can truly be proud of:

And yes, folks, it’s very much a real place. Excellent donuts, tasty teriyaki, and so far I’ve managed to clean all my clothes at home, so I can’t put in a good word where the laundromat is concerned. But that’s okay with me.

And then I was home!

The patience to wait

“Who said,” lashed out Isaac Penn, “that you,  a man, can always perceive justice? Who said that that justice is what you imagine? Can you be sure that you know it when you see it, that you will live long enough to recognize the decisive thunder of its occurrence, that it can be manifest within a generation, within ten generations, within the entire span of human existence? What you are talking about is common sense, not justice. Justice is higher and not as easy to understand– until it presents itself in unmistakable splendor. The design of which I speak is far more above our understanding. But we can sometimes feel its presence.

“No choreographer, no architect, engineer, or painter could plan more thoroughly and subtly. Every action and every scene has its purpose And the less power one has, the closer he is to the great waves that sweep through all tings, patiently preparing them for the approach of the future signified not by simple human equity (a child could think of that), but by luminous and surprising connections that we have not imagined, by illustrations terrifying and benevolent– a golden age that will show not what we wish, but some bare awkward truth upon which rests everything that ever was and everything that ever will be. There is justice in the world, Peter Lake, but it cannot be had without mystery. We try to bring it about without knowing exactly what it is, and only touch upon it. No matter, for all the flames and sparks of justice throughout all time reach to invigorate unseen epochs– like engines whose power glides on hidden lines to upwell against the dark in distant cities unaware.”

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I am not addressing ultimate justice; what happens when we die, to those who’ve been good or done ill. Only the things of life that sweep us up. Why do cruel people rise to the top, and why are the honest not always rewarded? Why was my heart allowed to break? Why did a child’s heartbeat cease to reverberate in it’s mother’s womb? Why?

And to claim injustice is to proclaim the knowledge of a universe I’ve only begun to glimpse with weakened eyes. To point my finger at God and cry out against Him would be to attempt grasping the past, present and future all at once, and to sing a melody of a song that has yet to finish, one who’s ending I have never heard. It would be to know the heart, path and design of every man under the sun.

I am in the center of a map of cosmic proportions, a traveler like yourself, and my story is being told by One who know knows the end of all things. Although the fruits of justice are not always made clear, I feel it’s presence. And it gives me the patience to wait, and have faith.

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Day 30 (Giving thanks)

My brother, John, wrote this shopping list for my mom.

At first I tried to figure out why olives are at the very top because who needs olives for Thanksgiving? People kept talking about it all day, and I couldn’t figure out why, and they told me it was just because people like…olives. People that are not me. But I’m glad they’ll make somebody happy.

And I couldn’t for the life of me figure out what MS meant. MS? The disease. What?

“Maple Syrup,” John said matter-of-factly.

Maple Syrup will forever in my heart be called MS. Forever.

And as I admired the interesting doodles that accompanied ‘the list,’ and I listened to the Christmas music my dad holds off from playing until November (Oh, Nate King Cole. I will be yours truly, always), and made pie, and found myself in the middle of a mini LaBrasseur Family Reunion, losing to my 8 year old brother at chess, winning against my 18 year old brother at Peggle, laughing hard with my sister (who’s one of the only people that gets me), and welcoming said sister’s fiance into the huddle as I challenged him to eat three mandarins simultaneously, which he accomplished with aplomb (not), and at fudge and ice cream, and played backgammon with my old man, prayed with my mom…

What is there to be said when words cannot suffice? How do I articulate such intangible things as receiving a hug from your big brother, or pressing out pie crusts with your dad, and being happy? Life hasn’t been easy this past year. I could fill tomes with my words, but they need not be said. No one needs to read those; they need to know that God is good, and that he loves us– that I’m waiting to go home. To enter the gates of Glory where God will catch all my tears in palms that could contain all the oceans, call me by name with a voice that birthed the stars in the heavens, and come home.

But, for today, I can wait.

We will shop for olives and Maple Syrup, play endless games of Apples to Apples, and we will wait. And today I will find joy in the gift of a thankful heart.

Day 23

I have to wake up in 5 hours and I’m trying to feel good about it. I mean, I ironed my shirt. I even threw my pants in the dryer to make them look clean.

I made an unexpected trip to church today. Usually I don’t work Sundays, but my boss gave me the ‘you must like taking vacations all the time’ talk after all the tim I’ve had to request off from work, because of missions training, weddings, and voting for the president. So when they asked me to work Sunday, I said yes, then I said yes again. And they think it’s weird that I like church, but that’s okay because they’re not Christians, so they don’t have to understand why it’s everything.

It’s hard to explain what happens when you get a group of believers together and start singing. Some would blame emotionalism, but I’ve attended concerts, watched speeches and rallies, the movie Braveheart. There’s something different about Church. We sang amazing grace, and while we recited the famous verses there’s just something… like living in a world where everyone claims the sky is green, and we finally get to sing about the sky being blue. The unadulterated joy that settles in your heart even though your throat aches from singing so  loudly.

And nothing compelling us other than the fact that He, the God we serve, loves us. It’s so simple. We strain and struggle with sharing the Gospel, us Christians. Books have been written and forums have been stuffed and documentaries have been shot depicting our failures and triumphs. Some think it’s nice that we’ve found our niche, but to leave theirs alone. Some call us silly and irrational, unscientific. Some actually seek us, but only because they admire Christ, not because they understand the fact that He died for them. The news is stiff with opinions and noise about religion, the big question “Is God real?” And how suffering and omnipotence could ever coexist. How could every other religion be wrong? How do you know that you possess the ONE truth, the needle in the haystack? Paul said in Romans that creation itself speaks the declarations of it’s maker. And Psalms:

The Heavens declare the glory of God,

The firmament shows His handiwork.

Day after day utters speech

And night after night shows knowledge.

There is no speech nor language, where there voice is not heard.

Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.

And us Christians, we try so hard to tell people, to make them know. And we forget that it’s simpler than that. Benjamin Zander was once told that only 4 percent of adults enjoy classical music, and they were wondering how they could push that to 6. Zander smiled as he said, “96 percent of the population loves classical music, and they don’t even know it yet.” And that was a stroke of wisdom. His words sunk deep, deep into my soul.

Everyone has heard the voice of the Lord, they just don’t know it yet.

And that short Ted Talk changed my life. Zander isn’t even a Christian, and he’s showing me the ropes. The beautiful thing about serving the God who created time and space is that He makes things work like that. My entire perspective changed. Now every day I see it. I see the line running through the earth, and there is only one. For no other reason than that He loved us. Loves us. It’s not about playing defense or offence in the verbal scrimmage of religion, it’s about pointing to the line. It’s already there.

Day 22 (Sonder)

Sonder

“n. the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own—populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness—an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.” (Courtesy of The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows)

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Waiting at gate A26

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Like this instagram, I’ll keep it simple (or heartrendingly complex?).

I was sitting in the Denver airpot, messing with my ipod; covertly resting it on my knee, I had pressed the capture button. As I kept staring at the photo that appeared on the screen, I realized I was their coffee sipper. I was their blur of traffic, their lighted window at dusk. Those people in my periphery– was their periphery. In a mere moment the faces in this photo grew starkly independent from me, and I loved humanity. It had not been the first time, nor will it be the last, that Sonder possessed my heart and wrenched it from the familiar, the narcissistic.

And I find I can no longer walk a crowded street without imagining elaborate passageways.

Day 19 (The Batwa Dance)

Do you remember what I wrote last night? While I was in my post-work stupor, feeling sentimental and wistful? I said I wanted to write beautiful things. I wanted my writing to point to beautiful things. I want to write little Batwa boys dressed in oversized, violet blue sweaters in Africa, dancing to the music of his tribe. If I could choose to write something, I would write this. But things like this can hardly be written. It makes my heart skip a beat to fathom all this entails.

Music, God created that. And He created family, and made our bodies capable of dancing, and made our hearts glad at the prospect of doing all of it together at once. He made the desire to know other peoples, the desire that provoked that man to travel across the ocean and film a remote pigmy tribe in Africa.

He made Africans, and He loves them, and I love Him and them.

And every time I think I’m over it, that I’m finally done with the heartache, I discover a rock. So I turn it over and find things underneath. Like this:

Day 18 (I’m tried and I know it)

I’m so tired right now.

I worked a catering shift, which means pushing your body around for a solid 7 hours until they let you off early. 10pm. It was some sort of convention for the Latino community. There was a live mariachi band, and salsa dancing. Wine. Lots and lots of wine because it was an auction so us servers were instructed to let it flow.

Something else happened tonight that made me feel weird. No, not weird….just different. A tall, handsome man told me that I had captivated his attention tonight, among other things. Usually I don’t take events like that too seriously, but the look in his eyes denied triteness, and he gave me a number on one of his business card. I might have blushed, I don’t know, because I’m shy like that.

Do you love Christ with all your heart, all your soul and all your mind? That is how you will win my heart.

But I didn’t say that. I just slipped the card in my pocket and continued serving. Shame on me.

So the night ended well with me not screwing up and everything going smoothly, and I came home and spilled my Arnold Palmer all over the floor, but that’s okay because I still had my Indian curry that I made a few nights back. My mother gave me her favorite recipe and now I am queen of the curry realm.

And I’m sitting here, exhausted. And all I want to do is bury my face in my palms because I want to mold something beautiful out of words, something that sings and glows. I don’t want to want to write beautifully; I want to write about beautiful things. I want my words to provoke minds to see beauty. There’s a difference. Too many have proved that raw talent is not enough. It is, but not for what I desire.

And you see what happens when I sit down to write?

When I scribe thoughts of impossible things and dreams without waking,

diminished in shadows,

born yearning for morning,

craving the light.

So you see. Words catch in my throat and make them ache, but so many times I am caught rendered speechless. My tongue refuses to cooperate when I am asked a question, or when I desire to speak now, not tonight or the next when I’m awake in my bed, trying to sleep. I have this irritating tendency of stuttering when I’m at work, and I feel like an idiot. It’s not like I spend hours meticulously fine combing my writing. I just…let my fingers type. So why is talking to difficult? I don’t even know where half this stuff come from. Maybe all those Patricia Mckillip books I read growing up. They captivated me, I remember. Heart and soul.

So sweet dreams. Goodnight night. We have another morning to face, or to glory in. Take your pick.