Small town southern life cannot be compared to any other lifestyle in the world. Believe me, after 11 months abroad, I know.
I was greeted by so many dear faces after riding those oh-so-well-known escalators in Atlanta. It was incredible (and awkward) to see my friends and family. Our adventure to Olive Garden didn’t disappoint, either. All four cars took different routes, none of them the easiest, and none of them lacking in their own hilarity. I’m thankful for these small things.
My first week at home has been full – haircuts, shopping excursions, parties, old faces for the first time again, Publix, Walmart, gas stations, and excursions with my Brudder in his truck. After church Sunday I strategically chose our lunch spot – Jalisco Grill, affectionately known as “Mexican,” because I knew some of my favorite people would be there – the Gentry family & the Rogers family. These are two of my favorite families, both of which I am an honorary member. The Rogers family includes my favorite gingers. I’ve known them since my sophomore year of high school and couldn’t love them more. The Gentry family is near and dear to my entire family’s heart. Mary & my dad go WAY BACK – to a high school that doesn’t exist anymore where MG’s mother taught my dad. She was my math teacher in high school for three years and I love nothing more than her wit and wisdom. She has emailed me through long nights in college finishing procrastinated papers, through the unexpected death of my Papa, and the wild adventures I just had. The party my mother had in my honor last Friday also included families so precious to me – the Hipps family, Mother Teresa & Big T (the parents of sweet AKJ who is in Africa bringing the Kingdom!), the Dormans, and so many more. I am truly blessed, y’all. I may not call Perry my residence for much longer, but it will definitely be “home” in my Instagram locations for a long time. It was frustrating growing up in a small town where I couldn’t get away with anything (not that I tried..much), but after being gone for so long, it is definitely a blessing to return & find so many supportive & loving people who are just as close as blood.
Needless to say, this process has been an adjustment. Here are a few things I’ve learned:
1. I don’t like fans.
2. Change occurs, but unless one is ripped from the environment in which it occurs and thrust rapidly into another, one does not notice.
3. Drinking American coffee doesn’t cut it anymore. I need Cafe Britt to survive.
4. I’m much more laid back than before and I enjoy it.
5. Vulgar music makes my stomach feel weird…
The coming weeks will bring so much change – potentially a job, new living arrangements, and so much more. It’s impossible to think of joining a new environment so different than anything I’ve known in the past. Honestly, I’m excited. The potential of being in my sweet Rome once more makes my heart smile. I know well enough now that each place comes with its handful of ups and downs, but I’m ready and willing.
I still know my calling. I still know what I need to do.
Carry the Name of Jesus -and that’s just what I’ll do.