That's how I would describe my departure from the beautiful country of South Africa. I have never, ever, loved another country than my own. I have friends that do, but I never understood. Until now. I love South Africa. And while I was very much looking forward to seeing my sweet girl and husband, my heart was heavy to leave. I was barely on the plane when I began to miss the team members that had left just 2 days before. I miss the Team House, I miss Danielle, Clynton, Nadine, Gordon, Francie, Jennifer and Abigail. They all became my family while I was there. They are so open and knowledgable about their country and their commentaries made my visit all the more wonderful.
I am not so naive to think that our team was any more special to them than any other team (except maybe to Danielle since we represent her home church) that comes through, but my heart's desire is that they each think of us fondly.
But I think mostly of the children whose paths crossed mine and whose lives touched my heart. I can't look at the clock without calculating the time in Cape Town and wondering what they are doing half way across the world. When I am going to work in the morning, they are outside their little homes, running in the streets with other children. I think of my sweet volunteer friend, Joy and wonder if she's back in school. I wonder if she thinks of me and wonders what I am doing as well.
I think of my team members from BBC who are now back in the states as I am. I wonder about their lives post-South Africa. I wonder if they feel as different as I do? I know it sounds cliche, but my life will never be the same and quite honestly, I don't ever want it to. I don't ever want to forget what I saw and felt there. I never want this ache in my heart to go away.
I want to remember.
I realize many of you will not understand this post. And that is OK. My prayer is that one day you will.