Thank you for the nice comments and messages in response to my last post. Although I still struggle with finding time to be in this space, I do want to continue this documentation. I'm thankful for the support of this small blogging community.
I spent about a week in Johannesburg, South Africa in early February. It was the first time I was away from Madeleine. I felt guilty being away from her. But despite the lingering guilt, that trip was really good for me. In addition to providing me the best sleep I have had in the past 9.5 months, that trip also gave me an opportunity to be around incredible advocates from all over the world, strategizing, plotting and drawing links between our work. My heart was on fire. I was reminded of how the work I am doing from DC fits into the bigger picture.
That trip also forced me to accept that being outside and working outside of DC is a necessity for me. There is a lot to enjoy about our lives in DC. I am conscious of the many things, all the small pleasures associated with daily life, that I would miss. But I feel just as strongly as I did two years ago, when I first moved: I don't want to settle here - we don't want to settle here. I want to be back working in Asia. Since Johannesburg, there have been opportunities presented that would allow my family to move back abroad. I don't intend to make a move in near future, but Ethan and I are looking ahead. (And that is a reminder to myself as to why I keep this space anonymous!)