Sunday, October 6, 2013

Nine Months Ago

I got on a plane....

the rushing of my pulse as the plane took off, knowing i would return a different woman

the excitement of meeting people who were biting off the same chunk of life

the fear of meeting family that would take me in while language was still in its infancy

the annoyance of bites, rashes, burns, allergies, parasites, and the like

the ballooning of my body due to the drugs used to treat the above

the celebrations of small successes such as ordering the correct thing at a coffee stand

the first encounter with a mangy dog in the middle of the night while going to the bathroom

the tears shed when independence felt stolen and safety felt at risk

the frustration with a trust that turned to abuse

the joy of moving on and taking the next big step

the depression of thinking i'm not far enough along to do all i want to do

the realization that i'm not here for what i thought i came for

the embracing of the unchangeable as the new norm

the self-hatred that followed embracing the norms that would be sub par elsewhere

the opening of a guarded heart to a world of possibilities

the countless millipedes and vinegaroons and that one night with the centipede

the mice that seem to like my workout and bedtime

the proposal over the, that really did happen, right?

the facing of facts that lead to a newfound commitment to myself in this journey

the Thai-nappings that lead to beautiful sights and ridiculous experiences

the deepening of my resolve to understand

the looking back on all that i've accomplished

the gazing forward to all that i still might do

the hope that i will be what is needed to help my beautiful new friends and children to grow

the smiles as i press a sticker to a shirt

the laughter as i encourage acting out vocab to make it stick by making a fool of myself

the blank stares and "อะไรวะ"s that make me strive to be a better teacher

the commitment that presses me forward when i want to fall back

the love that reminds me that there is more to life than being right

the smells and sounds of waking up on a farm in remote Thailand every morning

the knowledge that growth can be awesome and painful all at the same time

the appreciation for everyone who has gotten me through it (even myself)

...a pregnancy might have been easier.


  1. Your blog takes me back to some similar feelings I had 47 years ago.
    After the euphoria of the newness in-country and idealism wears thin, the overwhelming doubts that one person can make a difference start eating at you. But, once you push through those despairing feelings, amazing serendipitous things can and will happen in the time you have left there... and for the rest of your life you will see the world's options through changed eyes and heart. So, hang in there, dear Jessie. I am so proud to know you and appreciate your sharing so honestly.

    1. It's no joy ride, and I happen to have a fever, so maybe I was a bit harder on the journey than I would have been otherwise, but I know that there is much more to see and experience here, and I value the growth from the good, the bad, and the terribly disgusting, all. Thanks for being a cheerleader and reminding me that I'm not alone in these feelings.

  2. I think the end of your blog sums up the success you will continue to have. With appreciation for others AND yourself, growth is certifiable. Your grateful heart will be led to new heights, new joys, new breakthroughs. From here, I can see your evolvement, and it makes me smile and feel tremendous pride in all that you have and will continue to accomplish.

  3. I'm so proud and humbled to read your blog. You are an inspiration to me. Thank you for sharing your successes as well as your struggles. Thinking of you, Missing you, Loving you, praying for you every day. All shall be well and all shall be well and all manner of things shall be well.


    1. I appreciate your support and encouragement so much, as always. Love!

  4. What a journey, my dear! Knowledge and Growth - two sides of the coin that is flipping though your air. As you know, journeys include everything - beautiful sunrises and dark, rainy nights - but the experiences help to make us who we are. Love you!

    1. And flip, flip, flip. The coin continues to turn. Reminding me of the joys, sorrows, successes, failures, and all roads in between in this tremendous experience called life. Love you, too, Papa Bear...

  5. what a roller coaster! so much growth in your words! you are where you are suppose to be...reading this makes me sure of it! despite the ups and downs, so many things to learn from! love you xoxo!

    1. Love you, too. It's good to hear the encouragement from afar. Somedays you can't see the forest for the trees, and others, the universe reveals itself to you and it all seems to make sense. Thank you for being there for me through all of it. xo