I began saying my goodbyes mid January, I was sitting on a rickety wood bench in Embu Kenya, peering into the eyes of my good friend Patrick. I told him, in about a year I’m going to be returning to America and I won’t be coming back for a bit. It would be sad, but I would come visit as much as I could. I started to cry, not big tears but soft tears of recognition that this phase of my life would end soon.
It’s my goal to walk into this departure full on and accepting all of it. There are so many moments I enjoy here, the glance of my best friend, children dancing on the streets, gospel music blaring on Sunday mornings. I will not have those soon and it’s good to be as prepared as I can be for that loss.
Tatua Kenya is also preparing for this transition. We decided not to let loss hit us unprepared. Instead, we have taken the time to walk through how the organization will look, how it will be funded, what programs it will run etc etc. Some of those conversations are hard, it means coming to terms with the fact that we are all losing a really sweet phase of our life … but most of them are joyful. They are joyful because we can see how our time together has changed us and prepared us for the next phase of life.
I’m really glad we’ve chosen to take the next year to embrace transition because it’s given me the time to recognize that joy and to choose to celebrate ever more so.