Going to Cambodia wasn’t something I was very excited about at first. My parents wanted me to go, but I was initially hesitant about going.
– I didn’t know where Cambodia was.
– I wasn’t sure how safe it would be – I had heard of recent border tensions
– I was squeamish about some of the Khmer foods I heard and read about.
– I didn’t want to spend 2+ weeks of my life with people I didn’t know
Essentially, I was scared to go outside of my comfort zone and try something different. I didn’t want to go, period.
It seemed far away, though, so I put it on the back burner and spent most of my time working on this application for an internship with NCFIC (http://www.ncfic.org/internship)
In the months leading up to our departure, I had spent a lot of time praying, and wrestling with conflicting emotions. I didn’t necessarily want to go, but I felt God calling me to go, and I knew it would be something that I really do enjoy doing – serving other people. I tried to have an open heart and allow God to do a work in it while I was gone.
Suddenly, January 26th had arrived. I packed the night before, and time seemed to be moving too quickly.
The morning of January 26th was a busy one. My Mom wanted to get a portrait of our family, which involved getting dressed up. Our “theme color” was white – white shirts, and jeans, actually. Some people in our family didn’t get the message, but at least we all white shirts on. (food stains, cough cough)
Lunch was a sad occasion. My Mom made a terrific meal of pork chops and a salad, but everyone seemed so sad. No one wanted to head into the van and drive to the airport.
Before we went through security, we said our “final goodbyes” – lots of people were crying. I tried to stay upbeat, but was definitely feeling sad, knowing that if something happened to us while we were gone, that was it, until we met again in Heaven.
We breezed through security, (well, I got the security wand special treatment) and caught our flight to LA.
We set the clock alarm for the next morning and fell asleep pretty easily. LA weather felt great. Hot and humid.