I found out last week that a good friend of ours from China had suddenly and unexpectedly passed away. He and his wife were living in Texas and since his wife is one of my best friends, I flew down for the memorial service with Baby.
It was wonderful to see my dear, sweet friend. Heartbreaking to see the raw pain in her eyes.
Several other friends from China also traveled to be at the service and that part was an amazing reunion. But what a reason to meet again! We all wished we could come together to celebrate, not grieve.
But, as my friend so wisely says, "It is what it is."
Sometimes life is like that. Things are what they are. It's rare to find an explanation on this earth. We have to wait for it.
In Chinese we call that same sentiment mei banfa. Accepting what we cannot change.
I was so honored to be with my sweet, strong friend. Thank you to all the people who made the trip possible.
My sister-and brother-in-law gave up a huge number of air miles to buy me a free ticket.
My cousin gave me a place to stay one night, and Kristin Rae opened her home to me another night and bought me Red Mango yogurt.
Friends from China paid for my dinners.
My friend's mother-in-law treated me like one of the family and invited me to hang out at her house with everyone the day after the memorial service. She even let Baby nap on one of her beds.
My sister-in-law and mother-in-law in Washington watched my kids while the dashingly handsome sidekick was at work.
So many people blessed me.
My cousin even lent me his GPS so I wouldn't get lost in Houston!
It was a crazy, quick, emotionally devastating, but also strangely uplifting trip. I'm exhausted, glad to be home, but with my sweet friend and her two little girls always on my heart.
Say a prayer for them if you think of it.
"...We do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him." (I Thessalonians 4: 13-14, NIV)