It sure feels good to be back at HATS! I enjoyed a lovely nine-day visit home with my family in Nova Scotia and then a five-day adventure in Atlanta for the Passion Conference with my brother and a friend of ours. After the conference we went our separate ways, them on a plane connecting in Toronto and me on a plane connecting in Miami.
My two weeks away from Haiti have been interesting. I had to get used to things back home all over again. I had a hard time finding any food that tasted good back home, and everything was so different. It’s funny how I’ve grown up in that environment all my life but put me in a third world country for two months and everything changes. As we drove through Atlanta and even around Yarmouth, I saw the massive houses and perfect lawns, roads carefully paved, people driving in the right direction on the right side of the road, and stores with more things in them then we would ever need, and it really bothered me. We have so much and so many opportunities, but we never seem to have enough, we always want something better.
As I flew over Port Au Prince and prepared to land I could not stop smiling. The joy that I felt from seeing those slums, the dirty canals of water, the piles of garbage was incredible. I felt God say to me “Welcome Home”. Through all the dirt I felt real joy knowing I was back in Haiti, my heart was so so joyful. Happiness isn’t the right word for my feelings. I read once that joy is being able to thank God and still see His goodness even when things don’t go right. That statement describes my life perfectly right now. I never know what’s going to happen, things are always going wrong but yet I am still joyful and thankful that God is with us. I felt joyful as that plane flew over the slums and tarps that people call home, seeing people scooping water out of the dirty canal streams, and walking through piles of garbage made my heart soar with joy. I really did feel that I was home. It felt so good to leave the perfect, white, uppity land of North America and get back to my chaotic, messy, crazy Haiti. To say I love it here is an understatement.
As the van pulled into the compound the kids came running out of their houses and I could not wait to hug them all. A sign hung on the main house that said “Welcome home missionary Jocelyn” and I truly felt I was home. As I talked with the kids and hugged them and played with them, it felt like I had been gone forever. But as the evening went on and I sat on the swing and ate my rice and beans, I felt like I had never left. I settled right back into the swing of things and it felt so good.
I slept in the next morning since I had been up for over 48 hours with one hour of sleep and missed staff devotions for the first time ever. It was lovely to wake up to a bunch of voices singing in the room below my bedroom. My first day back was spent unpacking and spending time with my kids who I have missed so so much. We had a nail painting party and every girl got her toes and fingers painted. We played on the swings and with baby dolls and in the evening, I taught the big kids how to play Skip-Bo. Karen looked through a bunch of old pictures in the afternoon and we loved seeing how much all the kids have grown. Of course, we couldn’t go one day without some kind of injury or illness, so it was doctor/nurse/pharmacist Jocelyn to the rescue! An ice pack and some ibuprofen were all that was needed for the injured knee and despite walking a little funny the patient is doing better today.
Saturday morning, we went for our early morning walk which I have missed so much. I certainly haven’t missed hearing “BLANC” yelled at me everywhere I go but it’s all part of my life here. I made breakfast and did laundry as usual, just like I had never left. I have yet to make a coffee today, but blogging has been happening this morning. Blogging is my favourite thing to do on a Saturday morning and it has been going well. I believe some time in the playroom would make for a good afternoon and maybe a walk in the sunshine would be a good way to end the day!
Thanking God for sunshine, and sticky faces, and painted baby toes, and much much more.