Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Packing for a new life

My daughter leaves two weeks from today to move to Guatemala. One month from today she will be getting married. She and Mardo will be living in Guatemala for at least a year, and she will probably never live in our home again. In the past months we have had such fun together doing DIY projects, walking Percy, trying new recipes and cooking together, shopping, watching House Hunters and chick flicks, AND planning the wedding.
Now we are making lists of things that need to be finished or bought in the next two weeks. Carrie is going trough all her things and making decisions about what to take, what to keep, and what to give/throw away.
How do you decide what to keep when everything you want to take with you might need to fit in a suitcase? What do you do with the scrapbooks, yearbooks, pictures, etc. that you really do want, but can't take with you? How many pairs of shoes do you take if you're not coming home for a year? How do you pack a wedding dress to take on the airplane?
Carrie and I have done some of this decision-making before. She lived in Guatemala for two years while she taught at a school there. She came home about every six months and we would have a couple of weeks to cram in all the activities we like to do together. She would shop for clothes, shoes, and other things she couldn't get down in Guatemala. We'd pack , weigh, and repack her suitcases until we could get everything in that she needed.
Somehow this time feels different. And it is different.
She won't be finishing a work contract and coming home.
She is beginning a new season of life.
So what needs to go into her suitcases this time?
How do we pack up love, confidence, and encouragement? How do we fit in reminders of her roots, and leave room for wings for her to fly from our nest and begin her own?
So many questions - but I do have a place to start.... she will pack her Bible and her cell phone. In her Bible she can read about God's love. He can encourage her and guide her and give her so much more through His Word. And with her cell phone she can call home whenever she needs to hear from her family and friends here.
I'm sure there will be room in those suitcases for recipes, shoes, clothes, jewelry, a few picture frames for her future gallery wall, games, and other bits and pieces. I'll slip in all my love and prayers.
We'd better get packing!

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