Tuesday, July 1, 2014

“The Africa Blog”

Today we fly out of a spectacular place we have been privileged to call home for the past few years.  As we fly off with our eyes brimming and our hearts a little emptier, it is hard not to romanticize a place we put a lot of energy into knowing through the eyes of our privilege, our special trips, our involvement in the international school system, our work in orphanages, and the local populations we came to know.  

As our move has progressed, oodles of people have been asking me, “Please will you keep writing your Africa blog?”  When I started writing Well It’s Africa, separate from my family’s personal blog, this blog’s purpose was to communicate with family and friends far away.  We wanted to introduce those in our lives to the new things we experienced, the places we have seen, -and for some- to show them just why they need not fear for us in a place so different from where we started our journey as white babies born in the heart of the American Midwest.  My readership has somehow grown from my sweet little group of family and friends to over fifty thousand to date, a number that often hurts my brain. As this blog has evolved, it has come back to me from friends of friends of friends to complete strangers, often saying things like

“This makes me sick for the Zimbabwean home we left!”
"This blog helped me prepare for my move to Southern Africa."
“I love seeing Africa from a foreigner’s eyes!” 
“Your blog reminds me of my African childhood!”
“You’re encapsulating the little things we don’t even realize are different from the rest of the world.” 

So let’s answer this question, "Please will you keep writing your Africa blog?" For better or worse, (hopefully better?!)  I will indeed to be continuing this blog until I have no more to share about Africa, however long that is.  

As we move on from this continent that still feels new in some ways, the process of detangling oneself from what we have come to know as “normal life” will take some time.  As we process the things we've learned and continue to share the stories we still have to tell – this time within the freedom of our American society instead of with the fear of our Zimbabwean big brother looking over our shoulder- I hope you’ll continue joining me.  Zimbabwe has a number of changes ahead of itself, and I can't wait to watch where it goes.  My life in Africa may be over for now, but there isn't a soul that could separate me from the experience.  Today I carry it heavily on my shoulders, in full arms, at the pit of my stomach, and deeply within my heart as we leave a magical place we've been blessed to call home, my beautiful Zimbabwe…