Something that has been spoken to me a few times over the past week in the lead up to my departure, are the words, "I don't envy you."
I don't envy that you have to say farewell to an incredible country.
I don't envy that you have all of those wonderful friends to hug one last time.
I don't envy that you have to figure out how to live life again back home.
I don't envy the emotions you're about to be faced with in a matter of days.
I don't envy that you'll be lacking a few adorable kids to cuddle on a bad day.
I don't envy you.
And I haven't envied myself either, I mean, I'm about to experience a drastic scenery change! I'm sure it will feel not too dissimilar to the reverse of when I first arrived here in this foreign place, as a foreign person trying to figure out how to adapt to this new environment.
I've been told all the kinds of events that could cause a bit of the ol' reverse culture-shock, how it's going to be scary to hear the words, "So, how was India?" (how do you even begin with that one?!), and that it can be difficult to think back on my time here because I'll be missing it.
Sure, it is going to be hard. It will be emotional, and potentially overwhelming.
The most powerful message a friend of mine wrote to me was, "It hurts, because you did it right."
Does that mean that I'm upset that it's going to be hard? Not one bit. There is an explanation that this place, this time in my life, these people are going to be difficult to farewell - because I have reason to feel distressed and anxious about getting through a week without sitting with the women in morning devotionals, hearing their voices lifted up. It's because I didn't just come here and sit behind the computer at work, I lived, laughed, and cried alongside these women who have become such incredible inspirations to me.
It will hurt, because I'm leaving the people I love here, for an undefined length of time. I will return some time in the (hopefully) near future, yet when and for how long are still to be known - but I will return.
I'm trying to figure out how I will deal with the emotions to come. So in advance, to all of my friends and supporters at home, please forgive me if I suddenly feel overwhelmed, find it difficult to be in a certain situation, or I find it difficult to put into words just what I have seen, been through, and experienced here. Please be patient with me.
I guess, to sum up, I'm glad that I will find it daunting and upsetting to leave here; it's a piece of me that I hold dear to my heart that I am about to only be able to see in memories and photographs until the day I return.
Maybe I did it right.