The Road: Looking back on 2 years

I got to the end of a road and looked back
I looked back on the journey
the new, fresh, naive person I was two years prior
I thought about the missionaries I idolized then
Their calm confidence
ease of speaking Creole
their ideas, faith, their lives in action

I realized I, while far from 'perfect' or 'arrived,'
(both myths)
had come towards the end of my road
and am so much more of the person I wanted to be
the person I'm meant to be

The girl that is able to laugh at the insanely frustrating aspects of life in Haiti
The girl that is more spontaneous and flexible, the only way to live here, sanely
The girl that can go for a jog in the neighborhood without fear,
can hold a brief conversation with women walking down the street with their goods for sale
The girl that can laugh in a very appropriate Haitian-culture sort of way

The woman that looks back on the road fraught with abuse, pain, and trauma
and see the depths of courage and strength that she has found inside herself
The girl who has found God in ways never expected
in more real ways that are outside of the box of religion
The girl who is over forcing it and hustling for identity and worth
The woman who is now the most beautiful version of herself she's known to date

As I look back down that road, I see paradox
I see beauty and pain often in the same scenario and experience
I see miracles, I see friendships, I see rich community, I see love
I see ways I've learned to love myself and others
I see ways I've found joy and rest in Haiti, two ideas I once thought were impossible
I see someone with an intense passion for the world, for God, for missionaries, for caring for each other, for global health, for justice, for helping without hurting, for self-awareness

The road, the long, winding road,
with it's treacherous slopes, dangerous edges, and slippery mudslides
is a journey that bears much fruit in the end
a journey that I would never take back
a journey that has formed permanent engravings on this heart of mine




















Photo credit: Jamie Curtis (https://www.jamiekcurtis.com/)

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