I'm sorry that it's been so long since I have posted on here. I arrived back in the States about a month and a half ago. The transition has been harder than I expected, but God continues to be ever so faithful. I'll try to give you a brief summary.
My final days in Cochabamba were so rich. From Christmas parties with the kids, to extra spare moments that God gave me, to reunions with people I didn't think I would get to see (Remberto, Vick and family, some friends from church, Michelle (previous intern) and Mallory Timmer.). It was just a really sweet time. Goodbyes were hard, though I wasn't nearly as emotional as I thought. I do hope that I am able to keep in touch with all of my new found family there.
I got back to the airport very early in the morning of December 17th. I had hoped to arrive on the 16th at around 11:30 because then I would get to see my mom on her birthday, but flights were delayed and I almost was stuck in Dallas, but everything worked out and I made it home. My 8 siblings who still live at home, my twin, my parents and my former co-worker with International Teams Jaclyn were all there at the airport to greet me. It was wonderful.
I spent the holidays with family. It wasn't too hard reacquainting myself with family except for my youngest niece Sadie who still is a bit suspicious. We went to the coast for New Years which I suspect will become a family tradition.
Two days after New Years my brother Jon and I went on a roadtrip to Ohio. I was able to spend time with him, friends and extended family which was so incredibly refreshing. It was also really good to go back to my church. I was so encouraged by the pastors, deacon/mission board and several individuals whom God has used in my life. It was also nice to experience snow for a few days!
I'm working nearly full time at TSC. Never in my life would I have dreamed that at twenty-three, possesing a bachelor's degree I would be so thankful for a job as a cashier. But I really believe that God gave me that job. It's not a well paying job, but it's easy, I work with good people and it keeps me busy.
I've applied to two grad schools here in Texas for social work. It's a two year program and it will give me more confidence and opportunities to work with kids. I'm excited about it.
Coming back from Bolivia, I had already been warned of the huge adjustment that returning would be. Reverse-culture shock, confusion, depression and apathy were a few words that were thrown around in our debriefing session. I guess I was a bit skeptical that ANY of those words would ever be used to express me. I guess I could have been a little bit wrong. Or even MOSTLY wrong. The truth is that it is really hard to come back, and maybe even more so for me because I came somewhere where I basically know NO one. Argh. So you can keep praying for me to adjust to living in Texas, sooo far away from everything I've ever known, and with my family again. They've actually been really good about it. I get three sets of hugs and kisses every night before bed from the three littlest boys. :)
Well, I guess that's about it. Thanks for all your support, love and encouragement.
Keep on keeping on.
The best Christmas present: Franz got out of the Malnutrition Center on Christmas Ever. I went to see him a few days before I left and he was doing SO much better!!