|My sister with Grandma this summer|
I feel like the title home fits well with this post as it has multiple meanings for me right now. Home is here, in China. I feel like this is our home. Home is family. Part of our hearts are always with family in the states wishing we could be closer. Home is heaven, with Jesus. A promise made to those who choose to follow and obey. Home is the life we used to have (familiarity) and the life we now live (reality).
On Sunday, my Grandma went home to be with Jesus. She was surrounded by family as she took her final breath. Family was there all weekend singing to her, encouraging her and spending time by her side. I am confident that Grandma could not have asked for more and was at peace knowing her family was by her side. It's a hard reality for us, being so far away, and not being able to jump in the car and join everyone with Grandma. But yet, we know we are where we need to be.
Home is here. In China. Today I was in a taxi driving across the city and I just kept thinking how normal it all felt. Even though my heart is heavy and I am sad not to be with family, I feel like I am home. There is nowhere else we're supposed to be. This reality does not dampen the heartache of losing those we love in the states. I think grief definitely looks different when you are half a world away, the feeling of closure isn't a reality for me. However, I still feel the loss. The knowledge that Grandma no longer with us and the heartache that brings. Thankfully, no matter where I would be living, we all have great peace in knowing that Grandma loved Jesus and is now with Him. She had a homecoming the day we experienced a goodbye.
This week we also found out that our (former) dog Coco had to be put down. She got into some medications and it fried her central nervous system leaving her paralyzed. Her new family did all they could, but there was nothing left to do for her. Reading this news was heartbreaking in so many ways. We are sad, we know her new family is incredibly sad and the tragedy of it all is just hard to think about. Coco was, technically speaking, no longer our dog. However, we had her for almost three years as part of our lives. "Home" in the states consisted of her in it. I think it was even harder for me because over the past several weeks I have been thinking of both Coco and Nala several times, remembering their personalities and the joy of having them be part of our lives.
Home is in China. Home is with family. Home is heaven. Home is here. This is our new reality.