Change is in the Air

Most of you know that I am a missionaries’ kid. As such I am accustomed to change. We moved from Spain to the States and back to Spain several times. We moved to a lot of different towns within Spain as well. The last time I counted in my THIRTY years of life (yikes!) I have lived in twenty-seven or so homes. I’m sure the number is higher now. And being as though I am married to a surgeon who is in the Air Force that number is simply going to continue to climb for a while. That’s ok, I feel claustrophobic after a while, I get a deep yearning for change. I’m not sure what I would do with myself if I knew there were no more moves in my future.

Through all the homes, towns/cities, friends,changes in relationship status, jobs, hair colors, phases, etc the one thing that has remained constant in the past thirty years are my parents.  I have ALWAYS been able to count on them for anything-day or night. For the most part they have gone through all my biggest changes with me. Now it’s their turn. For the first time they are leaving Spain (with no plans to return), the place they started their first church, the place they raised their children, the place they met their first grandchild. Spain is where they grew up together as a couple in many ways. This is a huge turning point for us as an entire family. I’m not sure I ever believed this time would come. Spain is “home” and my parents have always been “home.” I can’t decide if this blog is going to be more about my feelings about their move or how I imagine it must be for them. It will be some of both, I suppose.

My parents are amazing parents, grandparents and have become best of friends to me. Selfishly, this move is a gift from God. Instead of being 4,579 miles away (yes, I googled that) they will only be 447 miles north of us in Nashville, TN. I wish they were only 4 miles away, but hey, I’ll take what I can get!! I have said this before and I will say it again, as I get older I feel more of a need for my parents. More importantly, I WANT them near. I can obviously live my life without them right here, but life is simply more enjoyable when shared with two of my favorite people. I look forward to being able to call my parents up and not count seven hours ahead every time to figure out what time it is there. I look forward to texting them. I look forward to them seeing Liam and, soon-to-be-arriving Sofia more often. I look forward to being only a SHORT plane ride away or a day’s car ride away from quality time with them. I look forward to celebrating more holidays and special occasions together. There are a ton of things I look forward to – one being the day we live in the same town!!!

On the other hand, I am sad that they are moving back. Mostly because of my brother and his three children. I think it will be a huge change for them. Every time I am around our nephews and niece and they see my parents they yell “ABUELOS!!!” and seem really excited to be with them. Their entire lives they have had them close by. I have only known Spain with my parents there. It is the same for my brother. Spain without my parents must be an odd place. Now that they are moving back we will not be visiting Spain as much. We will still go to see M,B,A,C & D of course, but it won’t be the same. This is sad to me. I will miss Spain and I will miss Spain without my parents – it simply will not be the same. I almost feel as though I am leaving home all over again. There is a sadness amidst the happiness.

It will also be difficult on all the people my parents have touched in their thirty years. I don’t think they realized how deeply they have impacted people until now. We tend to take people for granted on a day to day basis but when our day to day is threatened by change you re-evaluate the value of those around you. I think those around my parents are experiencing this and vice versa.

Change is never easy but when this change entails moving your ENTIRE life across the ocean and saying goodbye to thirty years of memories it makes it seem almost impossible. I know God has a reason for this move and He will be guiding them and holding their hands throughout this entire process. I pray they feel His presence at every step of this journey.

Mama y Papa, I love you both so much and we are here for you and praying for you always!




Filed under Liam, Miscellany and Tomfoolery, Parenthood/Pregnancy

6 responses to “Change is in the Air

  1. LaRue

    Good post, Melissa! It will certainly be a different experience for all of you and especially your Mom and Dad. It even seems a bit unreal to me. So strange, in fact, that I’ve already sent your Mom my final (ever) shopping list for Spain. I have, indeed, taken for granted that I could get raclette from Spain with not much of a problem! My raclette-providing umbilical cord has been severed! But I/we will survive!
    We have so many happy memories of spending vacations/Christmases with the T’bo’s in Spain and France and, though those memories may grow a little dimmer with time, they are for the most part firmly etched in our memories. I’m grateful for memories AND for pictures/videos that keep those times vivid in our minds.
    The only constant in life, it seems, is change. It always comes in some form or another, wanted or unwanted, prepared or unprepared, sooner or later. Perhaps it’s one of the ways God uses to teach us to trust him. God knows the plans he has for us….and our job is to trust and obey.
    Love you much, Aunt LaRue

  2. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings Melissa. It is interesting to hear how you FEEL this move. In a world and a life of such uncertainty that are both filled with constant change (I agree with you LaRue), we always wanted to provide some kind of stability for you and Matthew. I like your focus on stability with people as opposed to places, yet with a sense of connection to a place – in this case Spain. I look forward to heaven. As I understand it, what appeals to me most is the end of separation. Wow! 4,579 miles! That is a pretty big separation, even if we do have airplanes to get us back and forth. Maybe that’s why this feels like such a big deal to us. And hey, I think I must have missed some of those twenty-seven homes. You little socialite you -were you moving around without us knowing about it? I love you too and your prayers and assurance of support are very comforting. Thank you for dedicating a post to this move. Papá/Abuelo/Jeferey/etc.

  3. Thank you for sharing your happiness and concerns. It is so nice to hear that your love for your parents has just increased through the years. I am also one that enjoys change. God bless you in all the changes that are transpiring. If there is any way that I can help with any of it, please don’t hesitate to call me!
    By the way, MOPS has moved to the 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month, starting this Monday, September 19th. It sure would be great to see you!! 🙂

  4. Hey, Melissa, when I got that news release, some of my first thoughts were of you and how I figured this would be a change filled with mixed emotions for you. It will be wonderful having them closer and much more accessible to you, but I also know that it must be sad too, since so much of your heart is in Spain. A really great tribute to your parents and how they raised you. Hope you are doing well and excited about having a sweet little girl!!

  5. Gary Walls

    Outstanding post, Melissa! I first met Jeff, Susan, Matthew, and you in Spain 21 years ago while visiting Spain on a business trip. I know you don’t remember that visit but I have a cute picture of you and Matthew to prove I met you. Since then, Jeff and Susan Turnbough and Spain have seemed almost synonymous to me. It’s hard to think about them and not think about Spain and their work there. Also, when I think about Spain, I automatically think about them. In 1991, before my business trip to Madrid, I had called the Foreign Missions office requesting information about visiting Steve and Linda Reaves. I was told the Reaves were in the States but that I should visit Jeff and Susan. When I responded that I had never met the Turnboughs, I was told that after being with them for 10 minutes I would feel like I had known them for years. How true! Such friendly, loving, welcoming people. I spent a Saturday night at your home and went to church in Villalba with you on Sunday morning. We have been friends with your Mom and Dad ever since and we have had the privilege of seeing and visiting with them at our church, at the National Conventions, etc. in the States. When visiting with them, it seems we would never talk very long before they would express how anxious they were to get back home to Spain. This will be a big change for them, for Matthew’s family, and the pastors and all the Free Will Baptists in Spain. The Lord blessed them and their work when they answered His call to Spain. I know He will continue to bless them and their work as they answer His call to return to Nashville and they will be a blessing to Nashville, but it will definitely take a while for it to become normal to think about Jeff and Susan being in Nashville.

    Love, Gary (and Linda) Walls

  6. John Austin

    Thanks for sharing your heart and letting all of your friends feel little bit of your love for your dear parents and your beloved Spain. We miss you in NYC.

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