Heathrow Terminal 5. One last look around WH Smith. Anything I’ve forgotten to buy? What can I not get back in Berlin? Cadbury’s Dairy Milk are on special. Definitely need to get some of those!
And then on to the gate, waiting to return to my other life. A week of wonderful times with friends, of visiting old haunts, of reliving my old life, comes to an end. Another world awaits me.
Flying alone can be hard. And boring, but that’s not the point. It’s more the sense of completely leaving behind a very special week, because no one can share those memories with me. This is how someone else expressed this dynamic:
One friend wrote that the hardest part for her is flying alone. Not because I don’t have the ability or because I’m afraid, but because it highlights the fact that no matter where I go, there is no person that is consistent in my life. Sitting at an airport gate by yourself can be lonely for anyone. However, I agree with my friend. When you’re a single missionary, it’s a deeper loneliness than simply not having someone to chat with while you wait for your flight. It’s the knowledge that you are leaving one “home” for your other “home,” and no one is making this transition with you. Your two “lives” are consistent, but you are the only one who lives them both.
Today, I am feeling this a lot.