It’s been over a week now since I’ve been back from Tacloban, Philippines. I had great intentions of blogging everyday and telling the stories of those I met in Tacloban, but somehow it is nine days later and I only have 2 posts written out.
The first days after I returned, I just wanted to rest and try to process everything I had seen…then the blogging would begin. I found it pretty easy to write my first post, but as I sat down to write about my experiences on the first day in Tacloban, words were very hard to form. It took me several hours to conclude that what I had written was “good enough.”
I journaled every day while I was in Tacloban so I would remember all the details, but actually telling those stories for others to read has been so incredibly difficult. I want to do justice to each story I tell, I want to accurately depict what I saw, I want to make my readers feel what I felt. Six days after my last post I am realizing that I probably won’t ever be able to do these things. I can never adequately retell the stories that were told to me, no words or photos can ever show the widespread damage done by Yolanda, and no one can ever know what it felt like to hold motherless children or listen to the desperate pleas of the poor and helpless.
My first few days of being back from Tacloban I could only think about the hundreds of children we loved on, the wonderful people we served alongside, and the thousands of people we passed by everyday trying to rebuild their lives. My real life quickly started to regain control; I had two small children to look after and love on, and I had chores around the house that needed to be completed. I couldn’t focus my days on Tacloban and all that I left behind even if that is all I wanted to do. I hated that real life had taken over again, I hated that my days were not filled with serving the sick and hungry, I hated that I couldn’t give hugs to all of the little ones that stole my heart in so little time. These feelings have not gone away.
This past week has been anything but easy for me. I’ve cried many tears over not just the people of Tacloban but personal issues as well. My heart just plain hurts right now. I’ve asked myself many times over the past week, “Why, God, did you create my heart to love as much as it does? I don’t know how much more love I have to give.”
But God knows.
He knows how much love I can give. He knows just how much heartache I can take. He knows when I need that mischievous giggle from my 17-month-old or that bright smile from my 9-month-old. He knows.
So even when I can’t find the words to write the stories on my heart, God knows all that I want to say and that’s all that should matter. I will eventually tell the stories from Tacloban but for now God knows those stories and I take comfort in that.