Day 29: Peanut Butter M&Ms

They've been my favorite thing recently. Just the right mixture of saltiness under a layer of sweet, chocolate goodness.

I crunch on them while I watch Netflix or read a book or need a pick-me-up at work. (Sometimes I indulge in them at night when sleep evades me.) Salty and sweet, crunchy outer layer and soft inner layer, the perfect blend. It's better this way - with more than just the taste of sweetness.

As I popped another M&M into my mouth the other day, the flavor reminded me of the way my days go. Salty and sweet, rocky and smooth, experience after experience, all wrapped up into a day, and then a week, and then a month. Almost before I've realized it, months have passed since I first began reentry this year.

Salty tears flavor my days. I miss Cambodia always, and I miss the life I used to know in Waco. I'm confused about who I am, and I'm sad I seem to be losing my identity.

Pleasant, comforting surprises flavor my days. I meet a woman who's been to Cambodia and calls the people there "Khmer," just like the word's supposed to be pronounced. I can't hide the shock in my voice when I ask, "You know Cambodia?!" She knows the country that's a second home to me! On the highway, the cars line up by the hundreds, creating a white line of oncoming headlights and red line of taillights. For some reason, it's one of my favorite sights. It reminds me of a candy cane, of Christmas, of Houston, and of traffic to and from soccer practice in the winter.

These things bring salty tears to my days, too. Unbelievably tender gifts from my Father, given moment after moment. I am overwhelmed. 

The grief and gratitude of this reentry come from so deep within me, and the emotions are so powerful, I cannot but cry. Gratitude and grief gather inside me until they spill over in tears and choked-up prayers, in loud praises and angry shouts, in voiceless "thank you"s and whispered pleas. For a long time, I've tried to hold back my feelings, but here they are, surfacing. I'm learning to let tears season days, weeks, months, life.

It's better this way - with more than just the taste of sweetness.