Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Seasons

One of the things that I’ve found fascinating about living in Thailand is just how different the seasons are here.
When we arrived in January 2010, it was winter, which meant blue skies and 30 degrees for the entire month!  I still can’t believe how much I actually love “winter” weather now!
Moving through February and March, the weather not only starts to get hotter but the burning off season begins and the air quality is woeful.  The children are coughing, we are coughing and opportunities to play can be restricted.
Just as the burning off season feels like it will never end, it does and then the temperatures soar.  Last year we had 2-3 months of 38-42 degrees every day, without rain and with no relief.  If we thought it was tough getting to play outside earlier we were in for a rude shock with this weather.  You simply did not want to go outside because it was SO hot.  
Well, last year it was just after the Thai New Year's water festival (Songkran) that we heard a strange sound and the air began feeling a little bit different... could it be?  Yes! The first droplets of rain!  There was so much to celebrate.  I remember those first few showers of rain and how they felt hot but I didn’t care.  It didn’t bring much of a cooling effect but we knew it was the sign of more to come.
After being in the Australian winter (... nothing like Thai winter I can assure you) in June last year, we welcomed the return to some warmth.  Upon arriving back here, we enjoyed being right in the middle of the Thai wet season.  Besides the mosquitoes, there was not much else I didn’t like about this season.  It’s humid yes, but there’s variety.  One minute it is really hot and then suddenly it rains like it’s never going to stop.  We have seen some massive thunderstorms too.  Incredible! But after the rain, out comes the sun again and there’s that feeling of ‘steam’ that lingers for a while- ahhh I love it!
But just as people speak about the seasons in the weather, there are also seasons in life- everyone’s lives- which we all find ourselves going through.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 To every thing there is a season
and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
Ecclesiastes 3:2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time
to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

I remember when Tobi was a new-born and people told me to cherish every minute because he would grow up so quickly.  Well, in that season of my life, as much as I tried, I found that it really was hard to do that.  I longed for him to crawl, walk, talk... I found it hard to cherish and wait.  
It was much easier to do though when Eli and Spencer were born because I had some perspective.  But with a first born it can be so hard not knowing what to expect.
When we first arrived in Thailand all of us found many aspects of moving extremely difficult.  There were so many logistically things to work out and we had no idea how our children would cope day to day, minute to minute.
When we returned to Thailand in July last year though, I felt like we were finally in a new season.  We had some perspective and we knew what to expect.
The first month back was a time of relocation: house, school, ZOE as well as learning new things all the time.  We experienced short term teams with very few missionaries here, but we did it!
We've been in this house now since August last year and it is very much our home.   
There are still times when I pine for my beautiful family, my close girlfriends and the life we gave up to move here but as I sit here now I feel really blessed.  
Thank you for following me on this journey- through all the seasons.

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