Today is September 2nd, 2020. The borders of Nepal opened yesterday and I was supposed to be heading to the airport right now to take my much-anticipated flight! But obviously, things changed.
Over the weekend, I received notice that my flight was canceled. I reached out to my travel agent to see if we could reschedule for 2 weeks later and she told me that it looked like ALL flights to Nepal for the month of September have been canceled, not even just through my airline, but for all airlines, due to a lack of demand. It doesn't matter if I do everything perfectly on my side if at the end of the day, there are no flights to be had.
Those who know me well know that I have this strange personality quirk where I am chronically hopeful. Maybe that's the definition of an optimist? I don't know. But it doesn't seem to matter how many times I have been let down in the past, I still approach new situations with a "hope for the best" kind of attitude. Sounds good in theory! But let me just tell you, the "let-downs" hit extra hard. When you allow yourself to dive into something on faith and hope for the best (I'm also an "all-or-nothing" kind of person), and then you hit the bottom...it hurts! I mean, I expected things to have hiccups and tried not to set expectations very high, but I guess this time around, the news just hit me a little harder than it did the previous times.
It was almost like I had this giant bucket filled with hope and then someone came and dumped it upside down until there was nothing left. But you know, like most things in life, this is temporary. So. I picked up my bucket and put it right-side-up and have been seeing it filled back up, slowly but surely.
Pulled myself together and my travel agent and I re-booked my flight for the third time to depart on the first weekend of October. And I made the decision that this will likely be my final attempt for 2020. My nephew is due to be born on October 23rd and my brother is getting married in early 2021. I would plan to attempt again after the wedding. And to be honest, if I am denied a visa for October, there is very little likelihood I would be awarded one for later in the year. Optimist meets Realist?
There is SO much to be thankful for in this season, even when I'm disappointed or frustrated. I'm very fortunate to be around family and to be allowed to continue making memories with them. I have access to a car and to nature and can go and explore any time I want. And even though I am now without a job for the month of September because my position was filled because I was supposed to be on a plane today, I also don't have to worry about being cared for.
I have many mixed thoughts and emotions about October and whether or not I will actually be allowed to make the trip. My heart is already in Nepal and I am just waiting for my body to catch up to it! I desperately want to be there. But, I also DO believe and know that God is sovereign and in control and I know that if I don't get to go next month, that is His will. I know that I have been faithful with every step leading up to going and I trust He will make a way in His perfect timing. Selfishly, I hope that timing is the first weekend of October! But I know my Father and I know He does not withhold good from me. So, my peace is returning and my "hope bucket" is being re-filled in remembering who I am and to Whom I belong!
"Sustain me, my God, according to your promise, and I will live; do not let my hopes be dashed." ~Psalm 119:116
On Monday, when I received the news that all flights were canceled, I also received an anonymous gift in the mail containing a little plush boba toy. Adorable. And boba is one of my favorite things in life, so it made me smile and reminded me that God sees and hears and knows me! And so if He does something I don't expect or understand, I can continue to lean into him, knowing HE understands.