It has been a month since my return from China. It has been an interesting journey thus far.
The flight back proved it was going to be quite the interesting return. I flew from China to Qatar, Qatar to Chicago, and my flight to Memphis was cancelled due to weather. I was rerouted to Little Rock. Making it a 45 hour trip (minus the two day stay and drive to my hometown). Weather there wasn’t much better than Memphis but at least I would be able to stay with a friend until I could make it back to my hometown. The trip back started with being well loved on by sweet friends in China and arriving to a sweet surprise of seeing and staying with a friend in Little Rock. Trips are enjoyable to me, even this one being 45 hours. I was able to meet so many people from so many places. I read books and chatted with friends on the phone. This trip also allowed me to see friends and family I might not have been able to see nearly as quick in my return. Yay for surprises!
Making it back to my hometown was different. It has been labeled my hometown because I have grown up here, but it feels like anything but home. When I left the first and second time to go to China, I thought I’d never be coming back to Arkansas. At least not for more than a few weeks. Now that I’m here, I know I’m not supposed to stay in my hometown, at least not long term. That isn’t to say my hometown is bad or unwelcoming, because that isn’t it. Sometimes we just aren’t meant to be in a certain place our whole life and I feel like that is true of my current situation.
This means, I’m moving again.
I’m moving to a new place, with a new job, and a new life.
Something that gets forgotten about people returning to the US after living abroad, they don’t all have the means to start their lives over again upon their return to the US. This is where I am right now. Prior to leaving the US two years ago I sold everything I had. I sold my car, my furniture, my kitchen things, … I sold everything. So now I have to start over.
He has been incredibly faithful and has provided for each need as it comes. That provision looks different with each need. My largest need at the moment is a car. I’ll be moving to a new city next week and I still am car-less. I’ve kicked myself, argued with myself, and have done everything short of actually physically beating myself up about coming back not fully financially prepared for this next phase of life. During this transition I’ve realized, and many friends have told me, it isn’t as easy to transition back into American life financially as it was going to China. The dollar is more than the Yuan. So going with even a little money was easier than coming the other direction.
When abroad I wasn’t on financial support (meaning I wasn’t regularly supported by individuals or organizations) and made little compared to what life costs coming back. So I’ve been working some “odd” jobs since returning to help pad my financial situation. The Father has been so gracious as to give me friends and connections to clean houses for and babysit for and bake for … I’m so thankful and love seeing how the Father provides for me. He truly is Jehova-Jireh, the God who provides.
I have been and am willing to work and earn, . Some times He blesses us with gifts. He has been gracious enough to allow that to happen a few times too. People have been amazing and have shared their time with me, they have bought me lunch or coffee, some have even given me cupcakes (my love language).
Currently, I’m selling t-shirts to help me have a little extra income to pay for some of the start up costs of restarting a life in America (car down payment, apartment/house deposit, general housing needs, food needs, etc.).
In honor of just returning from China, the design on the shirt is the Chinese flag and the verse the Father has put on my heart since I’ve come to know Him. My goal is to sell at least 50 (or more) shirts. (Shirt design is below!)
To purchase the shirt, click here!