After about 5months in quarantine, I decided it was time to go back to the States. Those months were not without its blessings, but it was wearing on us- especially Pilar. We will go back and though I'd love to give a date, this year has taught me to hold my tongue on making specific plans. I can say we can't go back until Argentina opens its borders, but right now no one knows when that will be. Leaving Argentina turned out not as simple as buying tickets and having a passport. After figuring out when there were relief flights to the States, there were a lot of calls to be made to figure out procedures and laws, permission to be gotten to travel to the airport and our apartment to pack up. Because our apparent was just for this year and I'm not sure when Argentina will open up, it seemed best to move our things to Vanessa's house. Our landlord was extremely kind and let us change the check out date which saved us being fined for checking out early. The flight was long with a night spent in an airport, but immigration was fast. It was in some ways sad to leave because it was kind of like a final admission that this year just didn't turn out like anything we had planned on. It's a unique time when I think almost everyone can say the same and truly sympathize with one another. But it was also so good to get to the States! We quarantined by ourselves for the first week but even that was a drastic change to quarantining in Argentina. Pilar and I spent an enormous amount of time outside in a hundred degree weather just because it felt nice to be outside. Pilar played on a swing set and we relaxed at a house that is like a second home to us in San Angelo, Texas while our friends where away. After the first week and seeing that we felt fine (and let's admit it, we were under such strict quarantine before arriving that we will probably get the virus from others here but they weren't going to get it from us), that we decided to join my brother and his family in south Texas. Pilar was so excited when we drove up to their house her whole body was literally shaking. She is ecstatic to be here with family and her cousins. It's not been at all easy for her these past two years as she has had to say good-bye to her home and life in Bolivia and then say good-bye to family in the States and move to Argentina where everything is so different and where she doesn't have any real connections besides Vanessa and Britany. The church in Redentor was so loving and kind to us but the quarantine hit and her life became just me, her and a whole lot of insecurities. One of the first nights back in the States, she curled up in my lap and said she just wanted a home. As a mom, that broke my heart. As a Christian I am so glad that our home is with God and the family we have in Him. It makes it easier knowing that He is with us and He is our home. This time is hard for everyone but I hope we learn and cling to the fact that our true security is with God. He is trustworthy. We will not be let down in the hope we have placed in God, in His promises and in eternal life. Even during this time of unknowns and hardships, broken dreams and heartbreak, God is present, showing us He cares and that He loves us. In the way people show kindness, in the empathy given, in not judging others but giving space for diversity, in a helping hand, in people sharing what they have, in a letter written and a text asking how you are...in so many ways we are blessed and we are spurred on to keep up the faith and continue to hope.
"The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save: He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing."