Greetings from the hot, humid, crowded city of Jakarta! Yes, that’s right, I have left Geneva, Switzerland, and returned. Here’s the shocking part: unlike what I had imagined before, I’m not devastatingly missing Geneva!
Preparing to leave was a crazy ordeal. Not only did I have a gazillion things to sift trough and narrow down to roughly 40kgs, it was still business as usual (if not busier) at work the last week I was there, and oh, the many friends I had to say proper goodbyes to! I was a ball of messy emotions ready to explode at any time. Strangely enough, the explosion never happened. At least not in full repeated blasts that I had expected it to be.
I cried (or tried really hard to not cry) the following instances during my last week:
- In my room when I realized I still have another box to go through and a full suitcase after hours and hours of “packing”.
- When the choir director/music minister prayed for me at my last choir practice.
- During the blessing given to me by the pastor and members of the congregation on my last Sunday in Geneva.
- Saying goodbye to Daphne and her husband as they had to leave Geneva for a family emergency a few days before I leave.
- Listening to the meditation one of my colleagues prepared on the Wednesday of my office farewell lunch.
- In the hallway walking out of the office on my last day at work.
- At the airport after check-in (where the clerk let me pass with 3kgs extra luggage and 2 cabin bags), walking towards airport security and it finally sinked in that I am really really leaving.
Only seven times! Not bad, huh? Okay, to be fair, I might have forgotten one or two, but still. I didn’t even cry on the plane nor after landing nor in the days after that. And I wondered about that. After all, I was even hesitating about telling people that I’m going home because in many ways Geneva was home to me. So what happened?
The only thing that comes to mind is a request in the prayer my Genevan pastor said. It was a request for peace in my heart, and I believe the prayer was fulfilled.
Now, here’s a thought about the almost overused phrase “home is where your heart is”. Once you have peace, you realize your heart is with you at all times (without peace it’s easy to lose sight of your heart). Therefore, home is wherever you are.
I have peace in my heart. I’m home.
PS: This is not to say that I don’t miss my friends in Geneva or some things about Geneva. It is however saying that I’m not crying my heart out over that feeling of missing someone/something.