Wednesday, May 25, 2011

It's not all Adventures and Cute Children:Yearning for Home

This isn't so much a post on homesickness. This isn't so much a post that fits the usual beat of The Harrington Times. However, if the Harrington's are about 'anything' - it's about being real. Being real in the way they pursue adventure as much as they pursue community and friendships. Being real in the way they choose where to live, what to do and how to do it. Typically, that realness is accompanied by the main 'editors' propensity to look 'on the bright side' which offers posts highlighting fun (and, if we're honest, food).

However, recent events call forth a need to be real about pain. Real about the sacrifice and hardship that can come with living abroad. Because there are sacrifices being made. Dreams pursued and sacrifices made, they coincide.

For the Harrington's and countless others who choose to live abroad one major sacrifice is creating a deep (and expensive) distance between family and friends. On June 27th the Harrington's said some tear-filled good-byes to mothers, fathers, sisters, and friends who are so close they might as well be twins.

Since arriving in South Korea on August 18th, the Harrington's began saying 'long-distance' good-byes to family members whose lives have been given to eternal rest. While in flight, Melissa's grandfather passed away surely singing praises to his Lord and Savior. Hardly a month ago the Harrington's each sat at their respective work desks mourning, the loss of Mike's uncle and godfather who expressed a good and pure heart throughout so many years of his life. And even more recently, the Harrington's sat on their couch and received such unwelcome news once again. On Sunday evening, a man who leaves a legacy of financial responsibility and anonymous giving wrapped with his spit-fire wit and entertaining tales, Mike's grandfather, also bid farewell to this world.

This is the part of living 5,000 miles from home that hurts. The part that tugs a little harder on your heart strings and begs that you confirm your purpose in living abroad. Is it money and job experience? Is it a life-long dream? Is it simply where your 6th senses tell you to be? For the Harrington's, there is no single or simple answer. However, they will stay. They will re-sign and they will continue on in Korea for another year or more if that is where they feel lead.

Mike has tickets to go home. He will be there, to lay at least one of the men he so admired to rest, to be comforted by his family and to comfort his family. Melissa will anxiously await his return on Tuesday evening.


Stephanie said...

Praying for you my friend. Sitting here with Katie thinking of you...All my love!

Annalise said...

this is beautifully written and i love you both dearly. i'm so glad Mike gets to go home this time. i will praying for you as you are alone and him as he returns under such sad circumstances.

Marsosudiro said...

Peace be with you each -- Melissa, Mike and families. Thank you for sharing these inspirations.

Yesterday I was at the memorial service of a close friend's mom, whom I've known for 30 years. I was glad that I could be there to say goodbye. Glad for me, and glad for my friend and his family who appreciated every face who could make it. Many could not, because many live far away -- and because many friends have already passed on...


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