Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Sweet home . . . South Carolina?

This blog announcement is way overdue! Most of you who know us personally know by now that when our 2 year commitment with World Medical Mission ends in October we will be moving here . . .

Greenville, South Carolina! We are so excited about our new town. I hear it is great. I haven't actually been there (except for cheerleading camp at Furman in 12th grade) but everyone says it is a great town! Rhett did actually go and interview and was able to get a glimpse of our new home and his report was great too. When we first started talking about this job opportunity in Greenville we were just looking on the internet for information and photos and one site said "Greenville is known as the Athens, GA for adults". If you know us then you know that had our attention! Rhett has been blessed with an amazing job that has a lot of diversity, a big group of partners (unusual in ID) and the opportunity to teach in the residency and medical school there. We are amazed at this provision for our family.

Now we just have to get there! We are in about 2 1/2 weeks away from our departure from Kenya. It is very emotional and stressful. I thought coming here was difficult but, man, going the other way is tough too. Lots and lots of transition. I hesitate to start packing because, honestly, I don't know when we will unpack again. I'm trying to care for each of my children's hearts in the way that they need it as we guide them through this time of transition. I know everyone always says how resilient kids are and quick to adjust but speaking from a childhood full of major moves all over the place - it is tough. It is sad. Not to mention all of the cultural adjustments they will have to make. So even when my head is swimming I have to stay steady for the little ones who look to us as parents to know if all is right in the world.

One of the difficult parts of leaving Kenya is that everyone wants your stuff. I've heard others who left talk about how stressful this was to deal with but didn't understand until I had people knocking on my door early on Saturday morning asking to reserve Rhett's underwear. People at the hospital have been paging Rhett all week asking about our sale. One person wondered if we were selling "extra laptops" and another wanted our "sound system". What are we Best Buy? We have some old clothes and toys that aren't coming back with us but no "extra" lap tops to sell. Culturally it is important that we have this "sale" for the community so we are putting our junk on our porch and letting them come and get it. (I did learn earlier this summer that you can't give it away for free. Someone tried that and it caused a stampede and people were getting hurt. So I will "sell" our stuff for garage sale prices after letting our workers and close friends take what they want). After that it should be pretty easy to pack our life up into 10 suitcases and get ready for the long trip home. In the next 6 weeks we will travel to London, Athens, Ga; Boston, Colorado Springs, Atlanta, Birmingham and Dalton, GA before finally moving to Greenville.

Whew. Then we will finally be settled. Nope. We don't actually have a place to live so we are being creative (and cheap) and living here for a while . . .

That's my parents' motorhome and it will be our humble abode for a time while we look for a house or another longer term housing arrangement. We just found out about an ID Christmas Party that we need a babysitter to attend. Rhett is begging me to let him drive the motorhome to the party and park it with the kids asleep outside. Needless to say I've made other arrangements! It will honestly be a fun way to start and make the transition from our life in Africa to life in American a little easier - kind of a baby step. And every house I look at will seem HUGE compare to the motorhome!

Anyway, that is an update. I have lots of blog posts hanging around in my mind that I hope to actually post before we leave. I've left a lot of gaps during our time here and I hope to fill some in. Thanks for praying for our family as we say many good-byes and start to feel unsettled.


The Drs. McLaughlin said...

We understand the struggles of the transition (you know we do). But Rachel has had a lifelong dream of RVing. That is so cool! We hope it's a wonderful time for your family. By the way, I vote for Rhett's plan for the ID party.

Scheduling is tight here, but we'd like to come out and see you in Greenville when you get settled. State #48 for Eric!

Debra said...

We definitely are praying for your time of transition and the hearts of not only your children but of you and Rhett as well! Thank you for giving so much of yourselves over the past two years!!

Keri Sullivan Ninness said...


I have been a reader of this blog forever and have loved the priviledge of praying for y'all. (I am Chrissie's best friend in the world...or one of them ;) My husband is from Greenville and we visit often. I have a great network of babysitters there and LOVE that town. Please email if you ever need a good sitter! Good luck and God Bless!