The decision to transition back to the US has been difficult. We plan to return to Oklahoma June 9. There is a certain duality of emotions attached to our return to the US. We're anxious to see family and friends and yet sad to leave the friends that we've made here.
Today, I had a conversation that I've been avoiding since we made the decision to return to the US. I've been dreading having to tell our helpers of our departure. Our leaving represents the loss of a job for them. For Ibu Rah, we are her only means of support. As I told our helpers of our plans, they couldn't keep back their emotions. I tried to assure them that we have been pleased with their work and have enjoyed our time in Indonesia. I also shared with them that a new family would be moving into the house. I told them that I would write both of them good letters of recommendation and help them find jobs.
The truth is I know what they know. Jobs are hard to come by in Salatiga, especially for older women. Foreigners can be difficult to work for and it is the helper who changes, or is changed when difficulties arise, not the foreigner.
As Dana and I look for work in the US, I'm encouraged because God has always provided for us. Though we are getting older, I still feel like we have options. For our helpers, I see fewer options. Just as I hope to have work lined up before we return to the US, I hope that our helpers futures will be secured before we leave.