Saturday, March 9, 2013

"Ian Wanna See the Teeny-Tiny Cars!"

That's what Ian said to me in the airport in Guatemala City as we waited for our bags at the carousel.  This was Ian's 4th time to travel by airplane, but his 1st time to be old enough to care, and we had a blast looking out the window together at all the "teeny tiny cars."  What he didn't really grasp, however, is that the cars were teeny because we were high off the ground.  All he could talk about after landing was going outside to see all of the tiny cars!
Getting our bags in Guatemala City
Day one of our adventure overseas as a family of four was challenging.  It's tough to keep a two-year-old well-behaved on long plane rides and during layovers, especially, when you've started his day at 4AM and he's all out of sorts.  I think he did really well, all things considered, but it was still mentally exhausting.
Reading an airplane book, about airports and flying, to Ian

Physically exhausting was the hauling of bags and carrying a baby and wrangling a toddler and trying to stay awake on the humming plane to entertain and nurse and feed and discipline, etc, with very little sleep under your belt.  BUT, we made it!  We survived and we still had tons to be thankful for - no ear issues, funny Ian moments (like when he exclaimed "one, two, three - BLAST OFF" as soon as we sat down on the plane), and the closeness that Tedd and I experience when we have the opportunity to come together as a team - to name a few.
Nora flashes smiles at Daddy on the plane

Ian makes fast friends!
Ian got right to work making friends and played hard after we arrived our first day.  After that, he had a bit of a breakdown due to exhaustion.  It gave me a bit of an inward emotional breakdown as a flood of worry washed over me about our kids' health - emotionally, physically, spiritually.  Lord, I thought, am I nuts?! Oh, God, I'm scared out of my mind!  I'm so intimidated, I feel so vulnerable, I worry so much that this will negatively impact Ian, or what if they get sick?  I feel so desperate for Your protection and Your peace.  Father, please take care of my children. 

Even as the word "my" parted my lips, I felt the Holy Spirit reminding me that God created them in the first place and gave them to me as a precious gift.  They are really His, and I can trust that He loves them (even more than I do, though it's hard to fathom), so I can trust that they're in His care.

Day 2: We got more rest and now we have an 8 hour bus ride ahead of us!!  I couldn't even imagine how that would go with a toddler and infant, but I figured we'd survive.  The babies slept a lot and while Ian was awake, he played in our laps or by our feet (SILLY PUTTY is AMAZING, by the way!), and Nora would look around and enjoy the sights (and suck on her fists - a current hobby of hers).
Ian enjoys a juicy mango while waiting at the bus terminal
Some crazy moments included a blowout by Nora during a curvy part of the bus trip (and when I say curvy, I mean hold-on-to-your-seats curvy) we managed to strip her down, carefully stow away the soiled clothing, wipe her all clean, somewhat maintain her privacy, give her a clean diaper, and give her fresh clothes all while zooming down the winding highway.  Just imagine changing a blowout diaper while riding a roller coaster and take it down one slight notch and you'll get the picture.

The further out of the capital we go, the more the children become the center of attention wherever we roam.  Ian doesn't mind the attention a bit.  When the old indigenous women sweet-talk him and squeeze his cheeks, he squeals with delight while flashing a shy grin.  They've both been hugged and kissed on the cheeks by random ladies who spontaneously emerge from their store posts to see the white kids.  They've had their photos taken on cell phones.  While this may come across a little disconcerting to some, it's really quite sweet how warm the culture is.

On the bus...we're gonna make it somehow!
After a very successful day of constant bus-travel, I felt so encouraged by the babies' stamina and flexibility; they had done incredibly well, and were still in a great mood.  Ian was able to walk and hold Tedd's hand down the cobblestone street, and he got to hold a flashlight to illuminate the way.  We arrived at the apartment we would stay in for this leg of the trip and Ian walked right in and said "wow! Ian yike dat place!" (translation: wow, I like this place), he went on to say "my yove dis place" ("I love this place;" he's experimenting between 3rd person, "my," and "I" lately).  Then he asked to see the cows who reside nearby, so we walked out to greet the cows, when suddenly Ian looked up and said "wow!!"  Ian was taking in the starry sky.  It blessed my heart.  My heart couldn't take any more when I asked him "Ian, who made the stars?" and he said "God made da stars."  Then the Lord just topped it all off with a big fat shooting star.  Sigh.  We're gonna be okay.  The children are content.  We're safe.  God is real and He cares.

Starting Monday, Tedd will begin meetings with the LAMP staff here to talk about how to further develop our partnership.  Should be a productive week.  We also look forward to meeting up here with some missionary friends...more on that later! 

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous11:41 AM

    The babies are beautiful!!!! You guys are amazing troopers for Christ. Keep up the good work. I love you and will continue to pray for you that God's will be done through the works of your hands. Sis. Byers



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