So much to be thankful for.
I spent the last three days on the mountain with about twenty five other Americans and everything about it was wonderful. I don't think I've been around that many people from the States since I left, and between that, the mountains and the goodies one family brought from Texas, it was a most refreshing holiday. We went on a hike Friday, I think probably my favorite part, and let it be known that hiking with Americans is something else altogether than hiking with Romanians (meaning I could breathe and converse and didn't wake up unable to move the next morning). Nothing beats Romanian hikes, but this was probably the most pleasant one I've ever been on. And! We found a tree that looked just like an Ent! Cool thing about this place: as soon as you leave the city you feel like you're in Middle Earth. True we don't have Cheetos here, or Sun Drop and we don't get to be with our families for Christmas, but there are other blessings.
In this respect--and especially to do with family--there's been a lot. My Father: I know this, I identify so strongly with this, but there's so much I'm finding that needs to be learned, to be lived until it's real. And what a patient father my God is, gently leading me through these places, teaching me things in the small, quieter places between the things he's led me through once already. I'm missing my mom and brother more than I ever thought I would. And I'm reminded often that I'm supposed to be here, even when it's hard to not be there helping them. And the definition of family has extended in some ways, tightened in others. If you are confident in God as the father, as yours, then the question of adoptive families, people taking you in, becomes something to rejoice in and and thank God for, not to withdraw or withhold from--because you were always his.
And all this turns me toward the sixteen-year-old. The one whose company I enjoy more than I ever thought I would, through whom God is throwing wide open all kinds of things. As much as he's using her, I'm praying he'll use me in her life, all these questions of family. All these parallel lines between the two of us, two lives drawn from such different places but essentially passing through the same things. This is no accident. I want so much for her and it's amazing how God will change your heart--a month ago I was wondering how the heck this would even work.
So now. Back in our shared living room, back from Rucar to speaking all Romanian and all the things that drive me crazy and the abundance of blessings, back to Romanialand. I will say that being on the mountain with all those Americans was a much-needed reprieve for which I am super thankful. Such a good Thanksgiving.
Also, funny thing related to Thanksgiving. Sort of. When I got back last night I skyped with my best friend in the States and she overheard me talking to the sixteen-year-old, after which she told me this: you sound like a turkey when you speak Romanian. That language sounds like gobbling! So coming full circle...