Tuesday, May 31, 2016

You, Me, and Kimchi

So.  Funny story.

About a month-and-a-half ago, I made a rather off-the-wall comment.  We had just watched No Escape, (which I didn't love), and I said to Matt, "You know, that movie may not have made the best
case for it, but I think it would be kind of fun to be stationed in Asia."

At the time, we thought we were moving to Norfolk, VA, which was okay with us.  But my older girls were having a hard time with it because of some painful memories.  I was promising that it would be different -- I would do everything in my power to make it a 100%  different and hopefully better experience.  But just three days after this conversation, Matt sent me a super short email saying there had been a change of plans.

Big.  Huge. You could say a 180 degrees different "change of plans."

I called him at work (which I almost never do), and in about ten seconds, maybe less, he said he was being asked to do a job in Korea, and then, "Gotta go, 'bye."

I stood there repeating, "Korea?"  I wasn't sure I'd heard him right, and I tried to think of other places he might have said that just sounded like that.  He called me back with more details a bit later, and let me tell you, that was a crazy day. I cycled through almost every emotion every five minutes.  I was happy for my husband for this opportunity, and excited about an adventure, but also terrified and a little sad.  If Jayna goes to college as planned next year, she will be so far away, and I'd been asking God to be close enough that we could drive to her in a day if we needed to.  I kept thinking about how I went to Korea as a very young girl for a few days and how wonderfully nice everyone was.  But... It was so far, and so SO different from what I'd been expecting.

I would love to tell you that I'm brave, and I threw on my Adventurer hat and shouted, "YAHOOOOO!"  But there are people that I think would and should call me out if I did that.

So the real story is: At the end of the second day, we were watching a House Hunters episode that takes place in Busan, where we will be living, and I just melted down.  It wasn't a matter of any one thing, it was just all of it.  I mean, I've lived overseas before -- I was born and grew up there!  I guess it was just the reality of everything sinking in, and facing what I was giving up.  And also, I was remembering that one of the hardest times in my life happened the last time I lived in Asia.  I cried myself to sleep that night, and before he left for work the next morning, Matt asked if he should turn down the job.  I said, no, I didn't think so... but without much conviction.

But I got up and was making breakfast for the kids, and Jayna -- who had heard me crying and talking to Matt -- said, "I just keep thinking of that verse where Jesus says, 'Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear.' [Matthew 6:25]  I mean, if that's what we believe, then how can we not do this?"

Let me tell you, it's weird and enormously convicting when your kids say to you something you've been trying to teach them, and it's completely true and applicable.  Suddenly I knew I needed to email Matt and say, "No, don't turn this down."  And to my surprise, when he replied, he totally agreed.  The weeks since have had their fair share of crazy emotions, but when it became official last week, I can honestly tell you that I was excited.  The wife of the man my husband will be replacing has been so nice and emailed or messaged me answering my incessant and often unimportant questions, and has gotten me in touch with even more nice, helpful people.  Slowly but surely, they are making this move seem less scary and more fun.

I know the stress isn't over -- hahaha, definitely not!  Right now we are waiting to hear if we will be able to get packed out the day we were hoping for, or how much of our vacation time will we lose waiting for that?  And then there's the flight, which I might be doing with five kids and no Matt. (Please, God, no.) We are moving from a giant house (honestly, more space than I think we need) to a small high-rise apartment, maybe even just three bedrooms.  If that's not an interesting twist in figuring out "enoughness", I don't know what is.

But I'm trying to move forward while remembering this: "Attitude is the difference between an adventure and an ordeal." (Quote from unknown source)  

And most of all, I'm holding onto Psalm 139:9-10, which says, "...If I settle on the far side of the sea, Your hand will guide me, Your right hand will hold me fast."



  1. I can't wait to read about your new adventures! I think that's one of the reasons we have children, to remind us of what we teach them.

    1. Thanks! Yes, that's very true! It's just surprising when you realize they've listened! ;-)

  2. You are not the same little girl you were the last time you lived in Asia. God has refined you in ways none of us could have imagined. Your giving your kids the world, just as your parents did with you. You are an amazingly strong woman of God who works through her fears in a healthy way and trusts the Almighty through it all. We are so proud of you Joy Beth.


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