One-Way Ticket

This is the post I have not wanted to write.

Perhaps that explains my month long absence from this blog, my distractions and lack of focus. I have not wanted to think too closely about that nagging realization buzzing in the back of my brain.

I will be leaving soon.

It feels like something is being ripped from inside me. I am excited to go—we don’t move anywhere unless we believe in the promise of something better—but that doesn’t make leaving friends and family any easier.

My emotions are mixed, to be putting it mildly. On the one hand, I am thrilled to be starting a new adventure. I believe that learning French will be fun, immersion challenging, and living in a new place exciting. Living abroad and traveling wake me up from my daily routine. When I am in a familiar place, I take many things for granted and do not see as fully as I should. When I am somewhere new, everything is a wonder, waiting to be explored.

On the other hand, I realize that I am going solo into a completely unfamiliar situation. I know I will make friends, but it does take time. There will be days when I get lonely and wish to be back with friends and family here. I am also coming to the realization that I will be buying a one-way ticket, something I have never done before. There is no clear end-date to this journey, and I am still unsure as to how I feel about that.

Part of me wants to give in to our culture’s solution for anything uncomfortable: more anesthetic! It would be so easy to lose myself in mindless activities or the distractions of the Internet. It has been easy.

But I don’t want to live my remaining weeks that way. To live that way is to live half asleep, dead to the wonders of the world that beckon every day. Each day is a miracle, but too often we miss it or fail to recognize it as such. God, let me never lose my sense of wonder, that keen amazement that unlocks the heart, and always help me to be grateful.

And now, even as I am faced with the cleaning, the packing, the visa application process (which is truly the worst scavenger hunt ever designed), I can throw myself into these tasks as a measure of my own acceptance. This is happening. I am losing much, but I believe that I have even more to gain. I can’t know for sure, but I am trusting the One who has already brought me this far.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.


4 thoughts on “One-Way Ticket

  1. Leaving is hard to do. I went through the same mixture of excitement and sadness everytime I faced major changes in my life, as I am now facing another major transition in my life. You will gain a lot though, and remember that even if you change a lot in the process, you will always have a place to come back to. Learning a new language and a new culture is exhilarating, and helps you understand more where you come from, your own culture and set of values. Keep your eyes and ears open, and let us what you experience. I did write a lot during my first year in Canada, because everything was new to me. This fresh eye has gone after several years, and the surprises have left room for deeper understanding and appreciation, whilst not hiding from the things I like less. You will change, and the prospect of change is both frightening and exciting. I’m looking forward to reading about your new life.

    • Thanks Agnes! I like what you said about when the fresh perspective fades, it leaves room for a deeper understanding. I’m looking forward to keeping my eyes and ears open and writing it all down.

  2. You won’t be alone…we’ll be there. Switzerland is the most gentle place possible to learn a language, and it can be a blast at the same time. The new church family in Neuchâtel is just waiting to meet you.

    My advice is to enjoy the time where you are now, and pray for peace about your time there. It’s gonna be great!
    ~Matthew and Teresa

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