Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Leaving one Home for the Next

It's 11:47 PM Pacific time and I'm sitting in the International terminal of LAX. I spent most of today in a strange state of disbelief. I've been counting down to this day for over four and a half months, and suddenly it was here. Last minute details were handled this morning--stuff to Goodwill, final packing and weighing, shipping a box, taking a book back to the library. Cleaning and picking up the house where I've been staying this past month. Yes, the month of June flew by in the blink of an eye. 

Goodbyes are hard and sad. Hellos are fun and lovely. I have a foot in both of these camps tonight. I am anxious to be in UB. To be reunited with Zorig, to meet Enji and the rest of the family. And I am sad to say goodbye to SO many friends that have become my family over these past 16 years of life in Colorado. 

As I said goodbye over the past month, and especially this last week, it was strange to recognize how, in some ways, my friends are harder to say goodbye to. My family is scattered to the wind. Six people in the nuclear family and six states of residence. Four west of the Mississippi (and soon minus one), two east. We are fortunate to see each other once every 1-3 years. And oftentimes we have to choose whom we'll see this year, and try another next year. Our Christmas in Michigan, that occurs once every five years, is the ONLY time we are all together. 

Shot out the window as I flew out of DIA.
And so my friends have become the family of my Colorado years. These are the people that visited me in the hospital last year and have met me for coffee or a meal when I needed to talk. We attend birthdays, anniversaries, and other big moment events. We celebrate accomplishments and listen to disappointments. We text and call and email and Facebook. And while I am geographically closer to them and far from my parents and siblings--they (the local friends) are the people I communicated with more. What is this about? I don't like having this realization hit me. How is it that my parents and siblings and I communicate so little? It takes no time at all to send a text and let someone know that they crossed your mind. And how good it feels to be the recipient of that....

We are too damn busy for our own well as the good of those we love. Period.

I'm a mix of all kinds of thoughts and emotions tonight. I am sleep deprived and emotional and overwhelmed by the path my life has taken. That said, what I sit with tonight is a bit surprising. I already feel as though America, though I'm sitting in it as I type, is no longer my home. I have 15 boxes/containers of my life already in UB, one en route, and now 5 suitcases and 2 carryons traveling like me. I have MUCH to learn about Asian and Mongolian culture and ways of life, but I already feel that my home is there. In UB. It is wherever Zorig is. And in about 24 hours, I will touch down and begin again. 

Thanks to all of you for your support and encouragement over these past 11 months. I could never have predicted I'd be where I am. Not a year ago. Not in August. Not even in October. And I am. Thanks for your part in making it possible. I move forward because I know I have all of you standing behind me.


  1. What you share Heather has saddened me for years now, while making me grateful. Sad that my blood family has not been there to watch Walker and Raven grow up, to be together through the ups and downs, to share in laughter, tears, and all that life expresses. Grateful for the amazing people who have become my family - who have been there through thick and thin, who have held my hand when the trail was challenging, who have danced with me when life was in full celebration.....!! I think the saddest part I feel is for mom and dad, for as a parent it breaks my heart to think about how far apart families live today - my children have missed grandparent time, I have missed out on so much wisdom shared over cups of tea/coffee, small moments, and big moments, the list goes on. While as a parent I want my children to spread their wings to soar, I quietly pray inside that it will not be too far away, or that they will allow me to visit often, or come "home" - yet as you so wisely state "WE ARE TOO BUSY" - too busy trying to survive in my case and being held in place by the fact that Walker and Raven's dad lives here. I could go on and on, for "home and family" is something I have been deeply pondering for years now - our fragmented, chaotic world worries me - for I fear we are losing track of the most precious gift about being human - shared connection with those we love!! Thank you sis, for this beautiful reminder - I am so grateful for our shared time and miss you no longer being a days drive away, yet my heart soars with joy for you as you embark on this new journey! Love you

  2. Beautiful thoughts. Living away from family has always been a struggle to stay connected and make sure they are a part of our lives. I love my Colorado family of friends. I can't wait for your next post.