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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Life Between two Worlds: A Traveling Family

I love this verse from Ruth, it depicts our lives perfectly.

We just passed the 60 day mark until we pack up our lives again and head back to Japan. It honestly feels like we just got back to the States but in reality it has already been a little over 4 months. We love and cherish this opportunity we have to live part of our time here in Washington State (home base) and the other part 4,800 miles away in Yokosuka, Japan. There are so many crazy awesome experiences that come with being a traveling family but they also come with a price.

One of the hardest things of it all for us is creating meaningful relationships here in the States with families who don't travel with us. Relationships take work and when people know you aren't sticking around for very long they either (a) keep things super surface level or (b) sort of avoid building a friendship. It hurts but we understand people not wanting to put forth the energy and time when we are gone for months at a time. Fortunately there are a few people in my life that shed a great deal of grace on our family's living arrangements and recognize that though we may be thousands of miles away we still have access to e-mail, texting (thank you Google!), phones (thank you skype app with US phone number!), Skype, Google chat, snail mail, you name it! They also have a better perspective on time and know that 3-6 months really isn't that long in the big picture of life and meaningful, long-lasting, friendships. It is because of those people that leaving gets harder and harder.

This is also why I have kept blogging over the last couple years. If you aren't a blogger you probably don't know this but there is a HUGE community between bloggers. I have connected with many women who I truly do consider a friend and hope that some day we'll be in the same area, state, or country!

There are two beliefs that we keep close to our heart that give us the courage and freedom to move our lives periodically: Jesus is everywhere and home isn't a place but a person. When I get excited about moving from one place to another by no means does it mean that I won't miss the friendships I have- sometimes I think people get offended... Those friendships make it that much more exciting to come back! Chris and I have really strives to live in the present, to 'Root & Blossom' (read my About Us section for more on this if you'd like) where we find ourselves in life's journey. It's very freeing to know that we won't die if we live six months without the comforts of home- many comforts of which have slowly started to find their way out of our US house because we don't want to be known for abundance of possessions.

We've learned so much over the last two stays in Japan about who we are, who God is, what's important to us, what should be important to us, and how to live in the present. We looking forward to how our lives will be changed after this next trip. With that said though, Washington, you still have two more months of me and I'm looking forward to every second of it!

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  1. Beautiful post! Even though we live so close and never see one another, I think it's awesome that you travel so much! What wonderful memories and experiences to have! I can't believe you're leaving again so soon. I might need to send you some care packages this time around. :)

  2. Living partly in Japan and partly in the States sounds so tough... I mean, even just the plane ride is harsh! I can't even count how many times I've made that trip... :(

    And building friendships can be hard when you have a time limit, but the ones who can see past that are the ones that matter the most--the ones that will stick by you through thick and thin. And like you said, living in a different country can also be an eye-opening experience that changes you in ways that you never thought was possible.

    Thanks for sharing, Lena :) I love your positive view on life! And of course the fact that you're coming here to Japan makes this post all that more special for me ;)

  3. What's up with some many life things (previous plans, sickness, etc) getting in the way of us hanging out! Grr.

    If the boys were older they could be pen pals!

  4. SUCH a long flight! Gabriel is going to be 16 months on the flight there sharing a seat with me... Yikes! Hopefully he is just as awesome as he was at the beginning of the year.

    Cannot wait to join you in Japan! Love that country.

  5. I love your line "Jesus is everywhere and home isn't a place but a person". Great perspective and wonderful truths to hang on to! Hope you have a great last couple months in the States and a smooth transition to Japan. I look forward to reading about your adventures in Japan and the things you'll learn - so glad we've met and gotten to know each other a bit! Prayers are with you as you prepare to go!

  6. There were times when I was living in Asia that I was homesick for heaven. Even though I've never been there, I wanted the 24/7 presence of Jesus and to be with those I loved.

    And yes, even though you're only here for two more months, let's get together! After all, you won't be in Japan forever:)

  7. This post really strikes me. We have moved a lot as a family, and developing meaningful relationships has been HARD. Side note, we've considered moving to Seattle someday! What part of Washington do you consider home base? My brother is finishing school in Spokane, but since he's ROTC, he'll be leaving soon.

  8. So I totally don't know your whole story and why you share time between two places. Oh man that has to be tough. I love your attitude on this and the meaning behind your blog name :)

  9. Thanks Nancy friend! Blogging is definitely more fun in Japan. :)

  10. I can relate- it is a very eery experience living in Japan knowing that 90%+ of them don't know Jesus.

    That would be great! What days work best for you? You are also more than welcome to join our L&L early years group on Thursdays- we just started reading the book this week.

  11. We live directly across the water from Seattle on the Kitsap Peninsula. :)

  12. My husband's jobs moves us around (sorta) by our choice, we love it! We're trying to do as much as we can before kid(s) hit school age. :)

  13. I was going to can take us bloggy buddies with you, we're portable :) I can understand how that would be a little difficult, and I'm glad you've found a few good friends who make you look forward to coming back.


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