We’re down to our final week in Jakarta, which means I probably won’t be writing anymore blogs from Indonesia after this one. It’s so hard to believe that we are at this point. I vividly remember the night we arrived and those first few weeks of trying to figure out life here. It was a whirlwind of meeting people, trying to learn to grocery shop, finding doctors and setting up OB appointments, and getting lost in taxis! What a crazy time. And you know, it never got easier after that. It just morphed into different kinds of chaos. But that’s ok. We do hard things because God helps us do them. And in this case every bit of it was worth it.
As I work on packing and saying goodbye, many have asked how it’s going. I’m not sure what to say. If you consider emotional eating and listening to insane amounts of DC Talk on youtube normal then it’s going fine. (Btw…I recently discovered that TobyMac is 51 years old now! Seriously, that makes me feel ancient). I truly am so excited for the next chapter in our lives, but this is a hard one to close.
Before we moved here I was the most settled I’ve ever been. I loved our house, my job, our friends, our church, etc. I felt purposeful and content. When Jared told me about the opportunity to come to Indonesia my heart was conflicted. I didn’t want to leave my life behind, but at the same time I knew we absolutely had to do it. How could we not? The answer was a definite yes, and I’ve never regretted it. Not for one second.
Some final pictures from this side of the world.
Mother’s Day. I was gifted with a homemade card that Halle made herself, some chocolate, and a lovely french toast breakfast.
Umi also invited us over to her house for lunch. She made semur, which is an Indonesian beef stew. The meat was so tender and delicious. It made me tear up thinking about Umi’s thoughtfulness. She is a single mom with a lot to deal with, and yet she chose to use her resources to make us a meal with beef, which is not exactly cheap. Part of me felt guilty, but that is just the kind of person Umi is.
Best meal I’ve had in Indonesia. She even made extra for us to take home. I don’t deserve to have Umi in my life!
We also attended our last bible study. These ladies were Lacey’s teachers. They loved and cared for her so well. They’ve been a part of her life for nine months and have seen her grow from an infant into a toddler.
Speaking of how much Lacey’s grown…I was 14 weeks pregnant when we moved here and now she is 16 months!
Halle has a few more days of school left, but we’ve already had some last playdates with friends. I couldn’t have asked for a better social experience for Halle than what she’s had here. I’ve loved watching her interact with kids from all over the world. To her that is normal and it’s a beautiful thing. That will be one of the hardest things to leave behind–the expat life offers such a rich diversity of relationships, and while I know we’ll aim for multicultural friends in Raleigh it won’t quite be the same.
It’s been a hard and wonderful two years. And I’m glad to have it recorded on this little blog. My girls may not remember much, but at least we have the memories kept in this space. I don’t believe that living abroad is for everyone, but we all have different opportunities to take risks and leave what is comfortable for the sake of growth. I’m thankful for the opportunities I’ve been given. And I hope I’ll continue to embrace the uncomfortable things that come our way and resist the temptation to pursue easy over what is better. Jakarta was the “better” for us during this season. We aren’t the same people we were when we left. We needed the lessons that could only be learned here.
So thank you Indonesia! Thank you for making it possible for us to meet so many amazing people. Thank you for the traffic and medical conundrums and language barriers and monsoons and protest rallies that taught us humility and patience. Thank you for mangosteens and komodo dragons and batik and year round swimming weather. Thank you for Bali. Thank you for making us go to Singapore numerous times for immigration stuff. Thank you for rendang and nasi goreng and semur and soto ayam. Thank you for introducing us to new holidays like Chinese New Year. Thank you for awesome Santa Claus pictures with my kids. Thank you for Pak Agus and Umi. Thank you for our apartment staff who greet us with smiles every morning. Thank you for being the first place my older daughter went to school. Thank you for being the place my second daughter was born. Thank you for loving kids and not caring if they make messes and noise. Thank you for having awesome movie theaters and restaurants and malls. Thank you for being home.
And THANK YOU to everyone who read this blog and thought about us and prayed for us and kept in touch. I’ve appreciated your interest and care for our lives here more than I can say. It’s been so fun sharing this experience. I’m not planning to blog over the summer and don’t know if I will continue to do so in the future. I’m still thinking about it, but if I do it will likely be a private blog (which I’m happy to let anyone I know in real life read). But we’ll see :).
Again, thank you for following our journey. It’s been a wild ride. See you soon!