|10 years ago - the fall 2005 version of us|
|The house we moved out of to head to the Caribbean|
Ten years ago today I wrote our first blog post. We were parents of five (Britt,Paige,Ike,Hope,Noah - ages 15.5, almost 11, 4, 3.5, and 1.5) and we were preparing to move to Haiti for an eighteen month time-period. (18 months - 120 months - same-same)
Troy wrote this post the day before leaving for Haiti. (He moved three weeks before the kids and I did.)
In the early days, months, and years, I used to write a lot more, maybe even too much. When we arrived in Haiti the blog was our main way to communicate with family. It's wonky to think that since that time we have added into the "communication" mix: Skype, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Voxer, and smart-phones. We did not use any of those in our first months and years in Haiti.
When I first arrived here, there was too much happening in my head as I sorted out categories and suffering and theology and all the feels at breakneck speed.
I wrote a lot to try to record history and figure out what I thought about everything being turned upside down. If there is one post that has been written 100 times in a variety of ways - it is the post that basically says "I don't understand things I used to think I understood - and that makes me feel crazy."
We left our first Haiti assignment wounded. It was painful to try so hard to make a relationship with leadership work, only to learn they preferred for it not to be repaired and wanted to see us go. Moving to Port au Prince felt intimidating after living the village life - and we did so with great trepidation.
Once we got to Port we found a deep connection with the McHouls and the work they do. Thankfully we had been friends for three years at that point, that gave us a lot of opportunity to know them better. We split our time from late 2008 to early 2010 with another organization. That fell apart after we couldn't get financial questions answered. Disappointment (and probably some disgust) over that simmers right below the surface.
Being a small part of the birth of the Heartline Prenatal Program and attending the very first birth Heartline Maternity Center ever had, is something I feel so grateful for. We recently found the "chart" from that first birth and laughed hysterically at how terrible of a job I did at charting. A LOT has changed since that September 2009 birth.
(We will take all our record-keeping digital in 2016, leaving no room for ridiculous charting to happen ever again.)
Some of my very best friends have come as a result of this blog and relationships that began on-line. The positive relationships and good things have far outweighed the critical or unkind things.
The ten years have changed us a lot - in all the ways. We had the pleasure of hosting five foster-children, we added two more kids to our family, met and fell for two sons-in-laws, and of course a superstar grandson ... Tons of expereinces that have molded us into who we are now and who we are becoming.
Ten years certainly have caused us to know less. That tends to make folks feel nervous, it seems there are some that require knowing all the answers. Admitting we know precious few of them can cause squirming and discomfort. Total certainty is confusing to me when I see it in others, my experiences from the last ten years have totally deranje**-ed certainty for me.
I believe things, I experience things, but I am not 100% certain of very many things.
I don't write as often as I would like to anymore, but the one thing I wanted to write today, on the ten year Weblog Anniversary, was this:
We (my family in its changed form) are continually aware of how much and how often the love and support and kindness and generosity and prayers of this on-line community have carried us. Whether it was during tropical illness, birth-emergency at the Maternity Center, political upheaval, natural disater, or painful relationship things - We have ABSOLUTETLY felt loved and served by you all.
It feels insufficient and too distant to me to thank some of you who remain faceless (except for maybe a thumbnail photo) -- I'd much prefer to sit with you one-on-one (becasue introverts don't like large gatherings) and talk and express my gratitude over the world's blackest cup of coffee. Because that seems unlikely - THANK-YOU for the numerous ways you've helped us be here doing this. We appreciate the role you play and consider it incredibly important - when we thank God for all our blessings, we thank Him for you.
**Deranje is a Kreyol word that I love. It means to disturb or disarrange.
|Our kids on the day Troy left for Haiti|
Next Post: The story of how Josh came to Haiti and pulled off an epic surprise for our amazing Dokte Jen - wedding in 2016 !!!