Tuesday, July 6, 2010

On this American Holiday

One thing I don't talk about (very much) on this here little blog, is how much we miss Korea.

Because we do.

Miss it.

A lot.

It's funny how that is, isn't it? When we were there, we missed being here. When we are here, we miss being there.

I recognize that, ultimately, it's a longing for our True Home, but that doesn't change the fact that, occasionally, "homesickness" for Korea sinks in and takes hold.

We had a wonderful July 4th this year. Friends from Georgia came to visit. Friends from Tennessee invited us to hang out with them. All of us spread our blankets on the grass and watched the fireworks while listening to Lee Greenwood.

As much fun as we were having, I couldn't help but think of this special night on a rooftop in Korea.

So, in recognition of the wonderful life-changing experience we had in Korea, here is a list of things I miss about my Korean Home:

1.) I miss Easter. She became one of my dearest friends while I was there. She lived one floor above me and would come knock on my door once or twice a week so that we could have coffee and let our girls (who are close to the same age) play together. I miss her so. very. much.

2.) I miss the sound of the Korean language being spoken outside my window. We lived right next to a very vibrant, busy church. There were always deacons and cooks and pastors and elders and samonims and children walking by our apartment, talking and laughing and heading to whatever class or service they attend. I miss hearing that sound.

3.) I miss the physical contact. I never (NEVER!) thought I would be saying that. In the church, at the store, on the subway, Korean people simply don't have the "personal bubble" concept we American's do. There were times that this REALLY annoyed me. But when we arrived in the states, I remember going to sleep at night and feeling so isolated. So alone. It was then that I realized - with the exception of my husband and children - I can go days and WEEKS in America without touching another human being. No wonder I felt/feel so disconnected sometimes.

4.) I miss our apartment. The heated wooden floors. The all-tile bathroom. The huge sliding windows. The deep kitchen sink. The little laundry room (my favorite room of the house) that looked out over a rice patty and the skyline of the city. Chloe's princess bedroom. Maple's dragonfly baby room who's wallpaper reminded me every single day of how much the Samonims cared for me. The smell of food cooking in the hallways.

5.) I miss the mommy-baby room at the church. For church services, all of the mommies with small children would go to one room. We would sit and chat or sing or listen to the sermon, while our children would laugh and play and share snacks.

There are so many other thing I could mention here - like gimbap, and the little garden behind the church, and small children with big brown eyes, and elderly women who coo at my babies, and ice cream after church, and the silouette of the mountains behind our home, and the peace of staying home with my girls all day.

Many things we miss. Many people we miss.

So on this American holiday, as we celebrate the blessing that is our great nation, I give a nod and a "thank you" to our other home.

Let no foreigner who has bound himself to the LORD say, "The LORD will surely exclude me from his people."
Isaiah 56:3

And foreigners who bind themselves to the LORD to serve him, to love the name of the LORD, and to worship him, all who keep the Sabbath without desecrating it and who hold fast to my covenant- these I will bring to my holy mountain and give them joy in my house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be accepted on my altar; for my house will be called a house of prayer for all nations."
Isaiah 56:6-7

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.
Hebrews 11:8-10


Kathryn said...

Wow. This is such a beautiful post. I love that you have such precious gleanings from a year that required so much tumult and change.

Jess said...

I agree with Kat.

And these lyrics came to my mind. I realize it talks about a whole other place, but the sentiment and the feel of the song could not be more the same:
"With a holy host of others standing around me
Still I'm on the dark side of the moon
And it seems like it goes on like this forever
You must forgive me
If I'm up and gone to Carolina in my mind"

...Gone to Korea in your mind...and heart.

Citizens of the world.

Brandy Thixton said...

You're both so sweet. Thank you for your comments. :)

The Quote That Started It All...

I myself have twelve hats, each one representing a different personality. Why be just yourself? - Margaret Atwood