4 weeks down - 3 weeks to go! We are spending just over 7 weeks in the Dominican Republic this summer. Our permanent move happens mid October, yet I have already discovered so much about myself. Here are the Top 4 Discoveries:
A solid marriage is of the utmost importance. Some of the things that I thought would be hard haven’t been that hard. As a whole, we are transitioning well. But I am surprised by my overall feeling of being disconnected with Scott or at times downright annoyed with him. It is important that you understand that I am rarely annoyed with Scott. I still smile when he walks into the room because he is my MOST favorite human being. However, the last 4 weeks have really taken me by surprise. Who knew that the way he scratches his feet or chews on a straw could drive me bonkers. Who knew that I could be resentful that I feel I am carrying the burden for caring for the girls AND still helping with the teams. (And to be clear, Scott helps all the time and would happily help if I asked, but I am really hoping he will read my mind.) Of all of the possible hurdles that I imagined (like Scottie not doing well or Zoey feeling overwhelmed or the heat or whatever), my marriage and our relationship was not one of the things that caused me concern. I just wasn’t prepared for it. I am so thankful that this is happening now, so that we can be prepared. I will make time the next 3 weeks to develop ways to stay connected to Scott. Create time to communicate, process, pray and laugh together. When we return to the States in July and August, we can spend time preparing for marriage here in the DR. We need to get away for a few days because get-aways will be super hard once we move. Even though I haven’t enjoyed the disconnect, I do know that God is revealing it to me now so that we can enter into this season of marriage with purpose and intention.
Never say never. I told Scott that I would never EVER drive in the DR. The motorcycles dart around cars and as far as I can tell, they don’t really obey any road rules. The drivers are aggressive. All drivers honk at everything and everyone. I don’t know where anything is located, and driving is overwhelming for all of my senses! Sometime early in week 1, Scott and I were walking out to the car and I told him I wanted to drive. It wasn’t too bad. I mean I didn’t go far and I keep forgetting to look for motos, but I did it and no one died. Then, I tried again. Within days, I drove without Scott. Of course, it was a short distance, but I discovered that I am capable. Friday I drove to the POP airport to drop off an intern... what?!?! I can do hard things. And I really need to stop saying “never”!
I am becoming a crier. I do NOT like crying in front of people. I am sure it is a pride issue. Perhaps it is a control issue? I could spend some serious time in therapy investigating why, but I do know that I just don’t like it. But I will quickly get choked up talking about my Jacob and Emma Grace. The very idea of leaving them just hurts my heart. I don’t like it. I don’t want to do it. Yet, every single time someone asks about them or how I am doing I can feel myself unable to articulate what I feel because I don’t want to cry in front of them. I haven’t snot-bubble cried yet, but I have allowed myself to be vulnerable. More vulnerable than I want to be, but I am 100% sure it is God’s way of growing me spiritually. I believe that through my vulnerability, He will draw me closer to a community here. I know that healing will come through my tears, and I may not like it but it’s fine. And right. And freedom will be found in my tears.
I need a purpose. I fully realize that my primary responsibility is to be a wife and mom. I believe wholeheartedly that wife-ing and mommy-ing is fulfilling and enough. More than enough. But what I am learning is that I need something else. Something to keep my mind busy. Some way to contribute. The days when my hands and mind are idle are the days that I begin to withdraw more. The days when I am visiting with staff, interns, or the team I feel connected and involved. Purpose is very important to my mental and emotional well-being. Creating space and intentionality for this purpose is important this summer, but I now know that I need to enter into this new season looking for my purpose beyond my family.
The past 4 weeks have been amazing. The discoveries are not limited to just things about myself but also about our kids, our new community, and the Makarios staff. I will share about these in future posts.
Scott and I made the decision to move to the Dominican Republic in November 2018. This verse from Ephesians is one that I have been clinging to. It brings me great hope because my Jesus will do FAR more in our lives than we could ever ASK or THINK because He is at work in us.