Thursday, April 10, 2014

i am in the united states of america. i am in the bed i have slept in since i left my crib. i am in the room i have lived in since high school. this is all a little astounding to me. three days ago i was in brasil. in a house that i have come to mostly love. in a bed that is covered with a mosquito net to protect me from tarantulas and scorpions and less importantly, mosquitos. i got home tuesday afternoon. the miami airport was my first step into america. i was tired and confused. when asked if i was a us citizen i responded yes in portuguese. i thanked people i saw in portuguese. america has fast internet. this was shocking to me. my dad picked me up and he was the same. 10 pounds lighter. go him. my mama hugged me in the middle of her classroom and cried and squeezed me too tight. the air outside doesn't smell like poop. it is crisp and clean and cold and wonderful. my house that i have lived in for 23 years seems brighter and softer and nicer than ever before. couches are soft. my bed is wonderful. i know what drawer the tape is in. i know where to find the cash jar i hid before i left. i drove these streets i've driven since i got my license when i was 15. this town is the same (except they tore down taco-bell which is a little travesty) walmart was overwhelming and too much but quickly i found things i wanted to buy just to buy. i bought a bowl of candy at sweet frog and fries at mcdonalds. i stopped to smell the daffodils. i delighted in a closet full of clean clothes. i reveled in the amount of THINGS i have lived without for three months and have not missed. how did i ever live without these 7 mason jar mugs?

home is the same. my mama said it's like i never left but the minute i leave again there is a huge hole that doesn't get filled until i come back. i have wondered over the past 36 hours if i am the same. have i changed? has three months overseas impacted me? in walmart i reached for scarves, earrings, clothes, things that i have not had the luxury of seeing or touching or buying in three months. immediately my consumerism took over. i didn't give into it but it was there. i thought about the kids at the Lar who will never know a walmart. who will probably maybe never live a lifestyle of walking into a store and buying things to just buy them. i reminded myself that i have lived in a dirt town for three months without needing more things. i buy food once a week and snacks to treat myself but i am never in need of new clothes, new shoes, new things. i've bought one cd on amazon in the past three months which is actually amazing because usually i buy like one a week.

is my heart different though? it's cool that i can not buy things. that's a step. but really--i hope i am changed on the inside. deep in my heart. that i can love others better. that i am more compassionate. that i am more flexible and have learned that my life and my plans are not my own or probably not even that good of plans and i shouldn't hold onto them too tightly. this is a weird thing to come back to the us for six days and go back to brasil. it is wonderful and soft and nice but also weird to feel these conflicts in my heart. i am glad to feel uncomfortable though. I think if i was compltely comfortable here or completely comfortable in brasil i wouldn't be changing or being molded by the Lord so i am thankful for the weirdness and being able to pray though it and learning through it.

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