After graduating from high school, I went off to my freshman year of college in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, an hour and forty-five minute drive from home. Although I didn’t return home every weekend, I could make the drive any weekend that I desired and every holiday without much effort. This made keeping up with others relatively easy.
I moved to Florida the summer between my freshman and sophomore years of college. It was a difficult decision, knowing that I would be leaving my sister and youngest brother in PA. I struggled with the knowledge that we could not hang out whenever we wanted and get together for every birthday and holiday as we had in the past. The drive from Orlando to Reading, PA is a long sixteen hours that can be driven in one long stretch or broken into a two day trip if I stop at the home of friends in North Carolina. But the point is . . . it is still no easy, whimsical jaunt.
This is something that I have struggled with on numerous occasions. I have planned visits to PA around graduations. I have missed the weddings of cousins and my own high school reunion due to the short notice of the important dates. Recently, I had to consider making the trip when it was thought that my grandmother’s death was imminent.
I know that when Alan and I move to Africa, I may miss even more significant events. The flight across the Atlantic Ocean (or the big pond as I’ve heard it called a few times) and through two continents will certainly not be on a whim. I might miss the graduation of my youngest brother from high school and my other brother from college. I will miss funerals due to their short notice.
Likewise, my family and friends will probably miss the special happenings in my life because of the distance and difficulties of travel. One of the most important and easily foreseen of these may be the eventual birth of Alan’s and my child.
It is my hope that the pain and difficulties of the great separation can be bridged between me and family and friends. It can be accomplished through letters, e-mails, pictures, telephone calls, and our web site. Frequent contact and detailed descriptions will get us as close to being present as may be possible at the time.
It makes me sad to miss the special occasions of those I love and for those I love to miss my major life events, too. But I know that God is separating us physically so that Alan and I may do something great for Him in Africa. He is keeping you here in the states so that you may also do something amazing for Him.