Thursday, September 24, 2015


Two days ago, I wrote about dreams. Just before writing that post, I emailed the appropriate people and told them that I was ready to pursue going to a hospital in Cameroon - the only hospital that had responded to my inquiries. Based on schedules and timing and various factors, I had planned to make a decision on Tuesday evening, so that things could start moving on Wednesday morning.

On Wednesday morning, I exchanged one or two emails with the student missions coordinator people at WWU, and they sent off a request to the doctor in Cameroon to let them know that I had decided to come, and to confirm that it was still an option. There's nothing like getting a big, tough decision settled.

However, that lovely settled feeling didn't last long at all. About 20 minutes after the request was sent to the doctor in Cameroon, i received an email from the doctor in Chad. He had been led to believe that the evacuation notice for US citizens had been lifted. Therefore, he was wondering if I was still open to coming. At this point you may recall, if you read my last post, that going to Chad was basically my favorite dream. One source described Bere as "a true ends of the earth bush hospital." That is EXACTLY what I want, and exactly the kind of place that I want to go. So, with that information, you will not be surprised to learn that I immediately responded to his email with an enthusiastic affirmative.

After a few more emails, it was really looking good for being able to go to Chad. But that evening, there was one little email suggesting that the doctor in Chad may have received misinformation. At this point, it appears that that is the case, although no one seems to be able to confirm for sure. 

I've cried a lot more tears and felt a lot more emotions over going to Chad than I expected. There has been awe and wonder that everything was going to smoothly and easily. There has been curiousity and excitement and terror and thrill about moving to the middle of the bush on the other side of the world. There was shock and confusion when I found out that I couldn't go. There was sadness and frustration when I realized that I had to let go of my favorite dream. Yesterday, there was wild excitement at the prospect of going after all. And this morning, there was just plain disappointment.

So in some ways, I'm back to square one. I still don't know where I'm going or when. I'm waiting on some decisions and such that will take place next week and will determine whether I can go to Chad. In the mean time, I'm getting ready to go to Cameroon. I don't know how this is going to turn out. But I know it's going to be good. And just in case it's not....I just made a pear-cranberry pie to console myself. It's always good to be prepared, you know.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015


This spring, I started my last quarter of college and started thinking about the reality of becoming an adult. Ok, I stared thinking about it before that. But this spring it started to get real. I was going to graduate from college, and I needed to figure out what to do with my life.

It might seem simple; I had a nursing degree, so I should get a job as a nurse, right? But I guess I like to keep things more interesting than that, so that was just one option. Basically, I was considering getting a job, or going overseas, or applying to graduate school, or some combination of those. Eventually, I decided to send an email to the missionaries at Bere Adventist Hospital in Chad. To my great surprise, I got a reply within a day. From the very start, it seemed like it was meant to be. Everything flowed so smoothly, I couldn't believe it. There were a few delays throughout the course of the summer, but that was mostly my fault. And not only did everything go incredibly smoothly, the more I learned about Bere, the more I wanted to go there. Basically, it was my dream destination. 

Up until the very moment that I learned I wasn't going to Chad, I was confident that this was the place, and that God was leading me there. From here it gets complicated; and that's fine. I have a lot to learn about life as yet, but one thing that I have learned is that life is often complicated and seldom makes sense. I like to think that just keeps things more interesting. But interesting or not, going to Chad was a dream. Pretty much my favorite dream. So that means....pick a new favorite dream! 

I don't know the details yet, but I'm working on building a new favorite dream. I more or less have a location chosen, and I hope to have that confirmed in the near future. In the meantime, you can find me reading, studying a bit of French, playing with kittens, making pear tarts.... Oh, and dreaming.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

News Flash

A lot has happened in the past couple of weeks.

On September 5, I got my visa to Chad!

On September 8, my plane ticket was purchased!

My scheduled departure date was September 23. That, you may notice, is just a week and a half from now. 

However, early this morning I got an email that completely changed my plans for the next year. I don't know all of the details, but the bottom line is that because of recent threats to the safety of Americans in some parts of Chad, travel within and to the country of Chad is now strongly discouraged. So that means that I'm not going to Chad, after all. 

My head is still spinning a little bit, and I'm still kind of confused about what is going on. Not to mention the fact that I am super disappointed to have things fall through so suddenly. 

As I work on figuring out what is happening, I will be exploring some other options. It is my plan to find another hospital, likely in Africa, where I can volunteer instead of going to Chad. I'll keep you updated.

I'm really confused about what is happening and really disappointed that I will not be able to go to Chad, but I am also super excited to see what comes next in this crazy ride of my life. The possibilities are endless, and that's pretty exciting. :) I would appreciate your prayers that I will be able to find a place to go in a timely manner.