Lose Yourself

During my few years in Haiti, I lost myself.

I lost myself in the best sort of way and in the worst sort of way.

1 year + out I can see the immense fruit of that season , death and re-birth, and am so thankful for the healing sabbatical I took after leaving Haiti.

The losing and finding myself was painful, brutal, and a Holy process of tilling the soil of my soul. To be clear, I didn’t have much choice. The choice is: look inside or become incredibly hardened, cynical, and bitter from the pains and traumas that accumulate (in an accelerated fashion) overseas.

Saying yes to moving to Haiti was saying yes to splitting my heart wide open and taking a deep look around… but I didn’t know that at the time.

I was faced with my own privilege, biases, worldview, faith, and understanding of God. In the midst of my fight for healthcare for the poor, I denied myself over and over again.

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Simplify Your Life

Here we are: January, 2019.

What. The. Heck.

Maybe some of you are thrilled the holidays are over and ready to get back into a routine. Maybe you want to go back and relive every moment of the Holidays all over again… okay, well most moments.

So, January. Here we are. An invisible page is turned and all the sudden we should have goals and resolutions and it’s a new year and all the things.

I love how Emily P Freeman says ‘Dear new year, be gentle with us, we pray’ in her Blessing for the New Year.

Simplicity is attractive, and yet, so very counter-cultural. I drive down the countryside of Indiana and note the piles of trash parked on the side of the road. We just ended the season in America marked by excess; it still overwhelms me compared to life in Haiti.

So as we seek simplicity in life, soul, and space, here are a few suggestions to declutter your life and mind:

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Tennis Shoes

This week I finally bought a new pair of tennis shoes. I’m chronically indecisive, especially when buying a new pair of tennis shoes…online. I bought a pair and returned them (#America). I looked and looked and looked some more, called, ordered, changed my mind last minute, and finalized my order.

The shoes arrived right to my front door. The wonders of two-day shipping. The conveniences of America. I opened the box and tried them on.

With my new shoes on, I am in the therapy room in the clinic in Onaville, Haiti with Madamoiselle Pascal. I’m back in the heat of Haiti, sweating in that sunny room with one of my favorite patients turned friend. I gave her a pair of my tennis shoes that I had brought to Haiti because I wanted her to have supportive footwear and I really needed her to wear her ankle foot orthosis to keep her dropping right foot in a dorsiflexed position.

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Ignorance was Bliss: Learning the Hard Way

On my first trip to Haiti in May of 2015, this picture was taken. It makes me cringe and want to cry and laugh. A 26 year old physical therapist living in Dallas, desperate to pursue this life-long dream of missions. I had been seeking out opportunities for months and months and had been denied, wait-listed, and had scheduling conflicts. Finally, I got to go to Haiti.

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Liturgy for Fear

Fear

Is a liar

Fear creeps in whispering you are not enough

You should figure your life out now

You are wasting time

When will the other shoe drop?

Fear is oppressive

When it links arms with shame, together they aim to take you out

There are days when fear wins, when its voice is the loudest

On other, sunnier days, the winners are vulnerability,bravery, and presence.

Calm and meditation push back the anxiety.

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