Since we have been in Qatar the homesickness has come in intervals. One day Abbey will be really sad and ready to go home to her kitty. Another day will be my turn to shed a few tears over missing my purple petunia basket on my porch in Bountiful. Then Brett has a turn aching for the green Rocky Mountains of Northern Utah.
Until someone goes away from home, they don't know what will trigger feelings of homesickness. The strangest things will remind me of something I miss, and then I find myself impatient about this new life I am trying to maneuver through. One night I had a dream I was shopping in Target. I woke up in despair, realizing I really couldn't walk into that store of plenty. Maybe that is a sign I haven't been here long enough! Brett and I have gotten to a point now where we don't feel like we are simply trying to survive, so we have had time to reflect on the simplest things we miss about home. Here are just a few things we miss:
Brett misses seeing facial expressions. (All his students are women, and most of them wear the abaya with the berkha.)
Abbey misses hugging her friends.
I miss my Bosch mixer and cooking up something good for Ben and Mary or the neighbors.
Brett misses reading the Deseret News in the morning.
Abbey misses her brother throwing her on the couch when they wrestle. (When we Skyped with Ben he told her to throw herself on the couch for him, and he would punch himself in the arm for her. It wasn't quite the same, but it helped.)
Even though we get to see our grandsons almost every day on the web cam, I miss holding them, running my hand across Thomas' sweaty, thoughtful brow, or squeezing the cottage cheese thighs of Kimball - there is so much more to squeeze these days! There is nothing like kissing tiny baby toes.
The list could go on and on, but you get the idea. There are things I miss that I can't even write about yet, because it hurts too much. Homesick feelings can be large and they can be minute, but no matter what, they have to be acknowledged and discussed at some point. It is a good thing the homesickness has come in waves and we have taken turns comforting each other on the bad days. I don't know what we will do when we all come home and lose our cools at the same time because we just can't stand the sight of sand anymore. Tonight Abbey said, "Mom, tomorrow we are going to the airport and getting on a plane to go home to Utah." It took quite a bit of self-control to not agree and book the flight. Instead, Brett and I threw her on our bed and surrounded her with cuddles. Thankfully that is one thing I don't have to miss here. Our Abbey is an expert cuddler. When you are away, what are you homesick for?