Something about the air today is making my head spin. Recently, I’ve been thinking a lot about why we’re out here in Japan, what we’re accomplishing, and who will continue to be in our lives once we decide to leave this beautiful country. Not everyone will care when we leave, not all will miss us, we aren’t naive to this fact. To some, we are temporary place holders, for the people who they are really waiting to go home to. For others we are family; shared blood running thick through our veins, but wearing different skin. I recognize both for what they are. I don’t expect anyone to understand, but to me, absolutely every person I meet means something deep to my heart. Sometimes, I wake up and remember it’s not the same for everyone else. Today was one of those days.
Our decision to leave will be one of the hardest decisions of our marriage so far. Almost everyone else will remain unaffected and unmoved by it. But to us… if we were to leave in August 2013, we will have spent more of our marriage living in Japan, then we would have in the U.S. It’s strange to even think about. Together, Kyle and I have built our lives in Hirosaki. Embedded into the community around us. Our friends know us individually, and they know us together. Our friends recognize that we love to tease each other and bicker. Our friends know that Kyle and I are best friends. Our friends have helped shape our life as Mr. and Mrs. Sharpe. These people, most of them Japanese, have really become a part of us.
One of the people who really knows the most about mine and Kyle’s friendship, is Kimberly. I’ve talked about her before, and over this amazing weekend of adventuring across the state, I was reminded how lucky I am to have met her.
Here are a few highlights from the weekend:
Kimberly is 8 years younger than I am, grew up in a small conservative town, has very different goals and hobbies, and is probably more naive then I was at the age of 12:) We couldn’t be more different, and none of that matters. We still finish each other’s sentences, say the EXACT same things in the EXACT same inflection, and we know how to deal with each other when our moods change. What I appreciate most about Kimberly, is that there is no smoke screen. She is honest and straightforward. We can hangout and never say a word to each other (but let’s be honest, this never happens) She hangs out with the two of us all the time, and sees the inner-workings of our life. She may be the only person who I could confidently say I would trust to accurately describe the friendship between Kyle and me to almost every last detail. She is someone I will know forever.
We are not placeholders to her, and I think her blood is the same as ours. No matter how tough things get, or how bad I might feel, I will see the people who really care. I thank each and every one of you for that. I dunno why, but of all the pictures I have taken since coming to Japan… this one, is by far, my absolute favorite…