serious stuff · Southeast Asia

How I Found a Family 8,345 Miles Away From Home

It’s midnight on my 23rd birthday. I’m standing exactly 8,345 miles away from home in a Filipino town outside Manila and ugly-crying over a chocolate bundt cake as friends sing “happy birthday”. It’s one of those weird moments that while it’s happening, I’m hyper-aware, knowing I’ll remember it vividly for years to come, because it’s…… Continue reading How I Found a Family 8,345 Miles Away From Home

humor maybe · serious stuff

Eyelash Extensions and Existential Crises

Every expat ((I’m talking at least half a year, buddy!)) has a reentry moment, after they leave the place they learned to call home and return to their “home” country, where they absolutely lose their sh*t. I thought mine would be the shock of returning not to my Stepford-ish suburban hometown but instead to 45…… Continue reading Eyelash Extensions and Existential Crises

serious stuff · Southeast Asia

The Great Takeaway

As I prepared to leave the Philippines and my 15 months’ service with International Justice Mission fighting against cybersex trafficking of children, I started to regularly have this question asked to me. The first couple of times I heard it, I just kinda made this creepy Tina Belcher moaning noise until the person asking would…… Continue reading The Great Takeaway

serious stuff · Southeast Asia

Little (Garbage) Fires Everywhere

I love email and letter correspondences because they are whimsical, genuine, and impossible. You both try to share as much as you can but you just can’t capture the truest moments, the fleeting feelings that disappear as quickly as they happened. They’re beautiful but lackluster, like pressed flowers. I keep up a few correspondences here…… Continue reading Little (Garbage) Fires Everywhere

serious stuff · Southeast Asia

For Such A Time As This

Over a year ago, I left Romania shaky and weepy. My three-ish month stint serving at a survivor shelter for vulnerable women and children was watershed, seismic, and numinous. My eyes had been opened to a deep running river of Christ’s love, weaving in and around heartbreak, abuse, trauma, and exploitation, ending in assured restoration,…… Continue reading For Such A Time As This

serious stuff · Southeast Asia

Calligraphy and Arrows

The Saturday before last, I was begrudgingly convicted that I should go to my church’s fundraiser for their big location move (from a bar to a mall, which could launch a fascinating conversation about urban spaces and the space we’re called to occupy as Christians, but we’ll save that rumination for a rainy day). A…… Continue reading Calligraphy and Arrows

serious stuff

Joy, Unspeakable Joy

You know that feeling when you try to wake up from a self-induced NyQuil coma and you’re kinda awake and moving, but also like, are you even? Living in Southeast Asia for nearly six months now has been like experiencing that transcendent, hazy dream-like state constantly interspersed with acute moments of the deepest, sharpest realities…… Continue reading Joy, Unspeakable Joy