This has been the school year of GIRLS! Which has been quite a contrast to our houseful of boys. Little did I know last summer when Darron told me we would be having three student missionaries how that would impact me. Oh, I knew that there would be time investment involved but I had no idea how it would look and flesh out into reality.
Now that OUR journey together in Papua has come to a close, I must reflect. Lately I have likened the girls to being here like wearing a pair of warm gloves on a winter day. At first putting the gloves on felt cumbersome and unnatural and it limited my motions and took lots of extra time. Now I hardly think as the girls slip in and out of my days. The glove of them just slides right on and right off again. When plans get changed and they don’t show up in our normal routine, I find myself wondering about them and praying……..as If I’ve misplaced my gloves and it is cold.
Predictably spring has arrived, so quickly, and now it is time to launch the girls back to that distant first world, America. Even as I write they are hurling in a metal tube through the sky towards a land and people that they were home sick for and we talked about much. The winter gloves will no longer be worn as they will not show up to my house on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. I will no longer find them standing on the side of the road, waiting for a ride each morning. No longer will their long blond hairs grace my floor after each of their visits (a foreign object in an almost all male home). And who will I share those few reprieves of watching babies be born on the show, “Call the Midwife” a for “GIRLS ONLY” program. And chocolate, Cadburys, after long grocery shopping trips, is always better shared with a girl, or two or three.
I have witnessed “our” girls and OUR boys go from stiff conversations in August to anything goes conversations by May. The laughter and teasing and tormenting and stick togetherness has all been there and it has been good for our 5/6ths male home to experience “sisters”.
I have watched these girls blossom. When they first arrived they did not know how to get around town, eat out, shop at the market, buy data for their phones and electricity for their house and a gazillion other things. Now they have emerged into doing all of that and so so much more. They have made friendships with Indonesians and expatriates that will be remembered into heaven. AND they have become my friends. So even though I am old enough to be their Mom, I have delighted in the friendship of each unique girl and her challenges and gifting. Even though at times I have interacted with them out of an empty cup, they leave me with my tea cup FULL and my winter gloves folded beside. Reminding me that good comes from things that are perceived hard.
As I have given to them, they have so given back to me with their girly beauty and journey’s and willingness to serve in a land like none other. We are bonded for life and I love “our” girls.
May the Lord richly bless you, each one (Paige, Ashley, K.D.), as you move on in new chapters of your stories and recover from the piece of your heart that you leave here in Papua. Thank-you for infusing your beautiful womanhood into our BOY Boyd home this year, you are family now!!! And as you have changed, I have too. A part of my heart goes with you.