Whirlwinds are hard to ride… and the ride is often over very quickly.
So it is with trips to Brasil.
We arrived back in Raleigh around midday today and rode our “joy bus” back to Wilmington. It was interesting watching and hearing what was going on around me. Reflective, tired, tears, stares out the window, occasional laughs at the recounting of shared experiences, but mostly reflective. The trip is over but the journey has only just begun for most who made the trip. These folks will never be the same; that is an impossibility. They have ripped open their hearts, thrown a bit of it away in the dust of a desert
in northeastern Brasil, and absorbed a people who literally stole the remainder of that heart.
The sad reality is that the day to day, mundane, back-to-normal life that they lived previously will come rushing in quickly. They will struggle to hold on to that moment on the bus, desperately wanting to live in that moment and not in the “empty” existence that proceeded their life pre-Brasil. There will be a tendency to be lethargic and melancholy during the next two weeks. That is just one of the dangers of making such a trip. You can’t experience a journey to the borders or frontiers of the Kingdom
and come back unphased. It simply doesn’t happen.
However, as I noted, they are forever changed. That bit of dust and mosquitoes that they fought daily while in Ubaúna is now under their skin. They will see the children’s faces in their dreams, they will feel the tight hugs of people who did not want them to leave during quiet moments during the day, they will remember the fleeting smile of desperation temporarily pushed to the recesses of the brain because of what they were doing for those who did not have and did not know.
And that is good…