Sunday, January 19, 2014

Goodbye, Brazil -- for now!

Well, the time has come. After months of thought, prayer, discernment and discussion, after the invitation to come to Brazil, after the training, the visa delay, and the year itself...the time has come for me to leave Brazil, as my year is up. As I alluded to in my previous post, I'm not yet quite sure what that really means for me. In some ways, it's really just a 'see you later', because I will be back in mid/late March for a second year. However, while I'll be back in Sao Paulo for a week or so to resolve everything with the government, it'll be a goodbye for Sao Paulo, as I will head to Rio de Janeiro to live and work when I'm back.

View from the neighborhood of Santa Teresa, where I will be living in Rio de Janeiro.
I know I can handle things well -- conflict, transition, cultural differences and whatnot. I've always felt confident about how I can handle things like that, and I've definitely learned even more about it this last year -- and I will continue to learn more; it's a process. But that said...

I'm just not quite sure how to define these feelings these days. I am excited to see family and friends after so long -- in real life, not just via Skype. I miss the Pacific Northwest something fierce, and while I know it'll be a bit until I get used to the weather again, I'm excited to go on at least one hiking and beach trip and see the cold Pacific Ocean, as beautiful as the sub-tropical Atlantic can be. 

On the other hand, leaving Brazil is...I'm not even sure how to describe it. Though I am very much evolving even more into the world traveler label a lot of friends stick me with, and I'm sure that will continue to be the case even after Brazil -- I've grown to feel at home here. Honestly, people-wise, I felt at home right away. I've gotten used to speaking in Portuguese, gotten used to the throngs of people, the rhythm of a city that doesn't sleep, the rich colors and music and traditions of a beautiful country that I didn't expect would steal my heart so thoroughly and quickly.

At the very least, I know that it is a process -- and that, blessedly enough, I have learned to be somewhat comfortable with a level of discomfort. I would actually be somewhat hesitant with things if I were completely comfortable with every aspect in my life. It's a journey, a process -- and something moving often means something is growing or developing. This, in my opinion, is a very good place in which to be.  Over the next few months, I hope I can reflect a bit more on these things and delve into them a bit deeper.

I recently came across this song by Michael Franti on my iPod without really remembering how it got there in the first place -- I liked the album cover enough that I looked up the song itself, and to my surprise, the video is set in Rio de Janeiro, my soon to be home when I come back to Brazil!

 "I say hey, I'll be gone today
but I'll be back all around the way
it seems like everywhere I go
the more I see, the less I know
but I know one thing,
that I love you...
I love you, I love you, I love you..."

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