Anyway, leaving was really sad. And that could actually be almost the understatement of the year. I have never left a place feeling so much like I left a piece of my heart behind. I am perfectly content with knowing that I need to be here in Dahlonega and I really love it here, but a big piece of my heart is still in Mexico.
When we said goodbye to Saul and Mama Tori, Saul started crying. So sweet. I just love them a whole lot. So off to the airport we went, for more goodbyes to Mauricio. Also so sweet. He just has a wonderful heart and I feel so blessed to have been able to be a part of what he is doing in Cancun, even if for a short time.
What you need to know about flying with Henry is this: he's a big deal. And by that I mean he gets to get in front of everyone and we get to go with him since we're his companions and all. And it's great. That's what happens when you've been to 122 countries I suppose.
Linds fell asleep a little while into the flight and I was reading my book and listening to my ipod and just feeling weird. Not sad, not gonna cry, but just weird. Then this song came on my ipod that goes a little something like this: "the plane had barely touched down, she was taking photos for her friends back home. this was always where she felt her heart belonged. she was finally here. the sky was bright and clear" and then the tears came. Glad I was by the window because that could have been embarrassing. Hearing the words of a song I hear all the time all of a sudden touched my heart in a new way. Those words were the exact words of my heart. Mexico is always where I felt my heart belonged. And all week I just kept thinking "this feels like home. I could totally live here." All of a sudden, everything within me wanted to turn that plane around and run back to the mission house and region 235. It's so hard to walk away from a place that holds so much of your heart. But life must go on. And I am very much aware of that. So I sucked it up and continued with my book. Which also made me cry and gave me an excuse to continue crying. Kidding, kinda :)
We encountered some thunderstorms coming into Houston and we ended up barely having enough time to make it to our next flight. Homeboy in customs was chattin it up with the man in front of me, rudely being inconsiderate to those of us behind him who had a flight to catch! If Henry didn't have the hook ups, we would have missed it for sure. So we almost literally ran through the Houston airport to get to our next gate. Dodged the ridiculous carts that are all over Houston. Broke up some hand holders. Took down some small children. Were sweating more than a person really should. Heard the last call for our flight as we came around the corner. Were the last ones to get on the plane. Couldn't find a place for our luggage and almost had to check it until the nice man (who we are sure loves Jesus because people who don't love Jesus don't shine like he does) moved some stuff around and found a place for ours. Then we got delayed 30 minutes. Seriously? That just happened.
The flight from Houston to Atlanta was the only flight that Linds and I didn't have a seat (for Jesus) in between us. There was a lady from Cambodia sitting by the window. She had a massive tumor on her neck and was coming to Atlanta for surgery. Her family was behind her and none of them spoke a word of English. The lady was fascinated with everything about flying. She kept lifting up the shade on the window and peeking out and then closing it, only to repeat a few minutes later. One time when she opened it, we were in the middle of a cloud and she tapped my shoulder and pointed out the window. She was amazed and I loved sharing that moment with her. A little bit later, we encountered some more turbulence (of course we did). In case you have forgotten, I hate flying. So when that plane started bouncing around, I grabbed Lindsey's hand... and the little old lady next to me grabbed mine and held on tight until the flight smoothed out. I know it's not a big deal, but for a moment, we connected. It didn't matter that we didn't speak the same language or that I accidentally spoke Spanish to her earlier. It didn't matter that we had never met before that day. What mattered is that we had done everything we could to show her love, and she saw it. Love knows no language barriers; a common theme for the week, so of course it carried over to the flight.
The first few days back were tough. I wanted to be in Mexico. I would wake up in the morning and think I was still there and then realize I wasn't. It was sad. On top of that, I was overwhelmed with school and hated being back in the real world. The real world stinks. And Mexico is awesome. It took a few days and many tears, but I finally got adjusted back to life here and all is well. It's been stressful and I kinda hate it. I still think about Mexico every single day. I still wish I were there. I still feel like my heart is incomplete. But I love life. I love Dahlonega. I love being here. I am so content. And I love that feeling more than I love Mexico.