I'm learning what it's like to cope/stayhealthy/thrive in the midst of loneliness. My man is gone for two weeks, and this is the longest we'll have been apart. It's for a good cause - he's in Sierra Leone scoping out our work and living situation for later this year. I'm so excited to hear all about it when he gets back.
The more missionaries I talk to the more I learn that being apart (due to meetings, gathering resources and supplies, etc.) is part of the missionary life. We decided it would be good practice during this orientation to think about the essentials for life during our times apart. So many of the things that came up are ones that hardly cross our minds back "home."
- Safety: Do I feel safe? Are there people I can turn to quickly and easily?
- Transportation: Do I have the ability to go where I need with baby in tow?
- Health: Do I have what I need to stay physically healthy (hydrated, etc)? Emotionally healthy? Do I need/have electricity, water, internet?
- Communication: Am I able to contact people I need? Can I communicate with Josh?
We're halfway through our time, and I'm really pleased with our setup. We addressed each of these things before he left, and we're doing great. Baby E and I are eating 2-3 meals a day, sleeping well, getting some exercise, doing fun activities, meeting some new people, and learning some new things. My man asked some missionaries and a local friend to look out for me, and they're doing a great job! We've even been able to talk to him briefly over the phone a couple times. *swoon* That's the only time I've been crying... when I hear his voice.
I'm grateful for some advice a friend in Norway gave from her experience of being alone: "Treat yourself to some good food and some fun project when Elijah is alseep."
That helps with the thriving part of being alone. So do all the prayers that are being said on our behalf.