Walking Into the Future

It was agony watch to my girls walk wailing up the hill to school after our last hugs. I lay on my bed and cried with the sheer force of walking through my determination to make a new start, with the etching of a new line in the sand. But it was also a calm grace that propelled me forwards, for the sake of my children, to allow the future to be severed from the fear of the past and to release them into their futures without trepidation of history repeating itself. I carried a weight of significance throughout the rest of the day, alert but a part of me felt numb. Saying goodbye to loved ones is a particular wrench and brings I know for both my husband and I, a fresh respect for those who lose loved ones forever. The permanancy of being apart from each other carries such a unique despair that I wonder how those who have endured this tragedy manage to ever see beauty again. But I guess that's where the nature of God comes in and as we lean into His everlasting arms, we realise we cannot outrun Him and that no matter how deep the sea of grief, He is there with us.

Below is my journal entry from first thing today.

It is early morning and the cacophony still continues but now in the light of day seems softer somehow. Rumbling, rattling diesel trucks churn past the open slat windows in the equivalent of Tonga morning rush hour. The neighbour's china chinks. Birds twitter, geckos bleat and the roosters that began their morning chorus at midnight are still huskily giving the new day song. I have learned something new about roosters. Once one starts, a chain of rooster harmonies ensues. We went to bed at midnight, washing our black soled feet before climbing into bed. My pillow is roughly quilted on one side and satin on the other. I slid constantly off it during the night, while listening to the pig snuffling and snorting outside my window, the cat fight, the generator and during the incessant barking of many dogs. I feverishly worked my ear plugs to try to block out the worst of what was the loudest night noises I think I have ever heard, but I still woke up repeatedly as a crashing animal or shouting person jolted me upright. At one stage I thought I was at home, in my own bed and it took me a moment to make out the back of a sage green door, and the moonlight squares of window, covered with sheer panels of pale green beneath a thick tasselled polyester brocade fabric, tied in the middle.
Our flight was good, and we arrived in the dark. I was taken on a trip to Africa with memories of little men waving us in with batons, and others shuttling the plane steps up to the exit door. We piled our baggage into the van, and joined the screaming baby in the back for the trip to our accommodation, stopping first at a store for water.
We are in a simple home, but palacial by Tongan standards and after driving around today snapping photos of the island, I am feeling blessed to be in such clean surroundings. I even bought my tea bags, I know, silly creature comforts, but it is quite amusing to make my tea, in my own mug amid the geckos and coconut palms when I know that last week I stood in my own kitchen.

At this moment it is dusk, and I am alone in Friends Cafe with pacific music piped out from the speaker tied to the curtain rail. My dinner was the toughest beef curry known to man, and after I had shooed the feral cats away, I settled to post this before I am picked up. Sadly for some reason, no photos will load, but I will try again when I can.

My thoughts are at home, lightly only because I know that thinking too hard will reduce me to rubble. Know that you are loved my little ones. And G, you are missed beyond expression.

Gail  – (October 21, 2009 at 8:38 PM)  

Oh Amy, I had tears thinking of you crying after saying goodbye.... what you are doing - not only the mission side - is courageous .... you are amazing!

Cassandra Frear  – (October 22, 2009 at 1:17 AM)  

My heart thrills at this wonderful adventure that you are undertaking. I watch eagerly to see what God will do.

Anonymous –   – (October 22, 2009 at 1:04 PM)  

new sounds and lots of them.

Lee  – (October 22, 2009 at 11:39 PM)  

I just wanted to say 2 things:-
First, your new profile pic is lovely! Beautiful lighting!
Second, your Father is so incredibly proud of you. You are His hands and feet everywhere you go in Tonga. He delights in you. You mentioned your dirty feet - how beautiful on the hills are the feet of those that bring good news. While we have never met, I will be thinking of you and praying for you (and for your family) in this challenging yet beautiful time. I'm sure that you are embracing it. And I'm sure that your Abba Father is smiling. :)
Say hi to Africa for me. I miss that sun.

Sj  – (October 24, 2009 at 9:18 AM)  

Hello delicious woman!
I am amazed at you wonderful lady. whenever i think of you and your Tonga time, i'm excited and aware too, that you need my prayers. I always love your writing Amy, thank you for sharing your life with us. Trusting there are beautiful surprises that you didn't except in your time away. I thank HIM for you and the way you choose to live out the life you are in! love u, sez

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