One would think that after saying goodbye so many times before, we would have grown accustomed to the words. The tears. The longing.

My family feels a little splintered this day. Today, Mom, Dad and the two boys fly back to Uganda. After spending nine months here in the states, their furlough is officially over, and we said our goodbyes late last night.

We've never been quite so split apart before. First, I was here alone, while they were all together, home in Karamoja. After a year, Emily joined me on this side. But now, all three sisters are staying behind, each in our own city. Different states. Only four are going home. A family of seven feels very small when only four return to Africa.

There is a smallness. A small splintering of the soul that aches in every way when you know that you can't go back and they can't stay. I wouldn't want them to never go back. But I don't want them to leave either. It is sad to be left behind. To be together has been a beautiful refreshment.

I couldn't be prouder of my parents for going back and resuming the work they have been called to do. In two years, we will all be together again, and though it may sound like a hollow comfort, I am eagerly anticipating that joy.

“Those who sow in tears
shall reap with shouts of joy!
He who goes out weeping,
bearing the seed for sowing,
shall come home with shouts of joy,
bringing his sheaves with him.”

Psalm 126:5-6


  1. Beautifully expressed, Kate! I am so sorry for the sadness and the distance and the splintering...xo

  2. (non-awkward) hugs and prayers from afar, dear.


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