In less than a week, our Costa Rican Adventure ends and our life in the States begin. Therefore, this will be the last post on our year-long adventure.
In the dictionary, Sabbatical means “a rest from work, or a hiatus, often lasting from two months to a year”. We are finishing up our “SABBATICAL OF LIFE” and 11 months was a perfect amount of time.
Before we left for Costa Rica, life got tedious, repetitive and a bit boring. When the finance business took a turn a few years ago, we knew there was more to life than making money. We were ready for the search of a much simplier life. We wanted to be without and go without all of our “stuff”, just to see what life would bring and what opportunities would arise. We got more out of this journey than we could have ever prayed for: clarity about ourselves, our family, and what we want out of life.
Being in this country, there are so many things we’ve wanted, and either 1) didn’t have access to them, or 2) they cost a fortune to get. Some examples are brands of food (i.e. Heinz Ketchup), car parts (that we have brought from the States), sheets for beds (you have to have shipped from another city), and the list goes on. One specific example is Billy wanting to pick up the phone and call his clients, and can’t. To make a call, he has to first make sure the internet is working. Then he re-boots the computer, grabs his headset, and calls through the computer. It gets the job done, but the call is never 100% clear, and 1/2 of the time the call drops. As you can imagine, the people on the other end get very frustrated. For this reason alone, Billy is so excited to get back, talk on a cell or landline phone, meet clients face to face, and work his tail off.
Billy’s experiences with the telephone and his burning desire to work, reminds me alot of Colt McCoy’s childhood football story: going without, creates the urge to want it even more. Long story short, Colt’s daddy was a High School Football Coach, and did not allow Colt to play organized sports until he was in 7th grade. Even though Colt wanted to play football before then, his dad wanted him to have the drive, the fire and the will to want to play. He didn’t want him to get burnt out early, and not enjoy the game. When Colt stepped on that football field in 7th grade, he had that burning desire to play football. He was beyond ready, and the passion showed. I love that story, and understand it 100%. We are living it.
As for me, I’m pumped about the little things in life I sooooo took for granted. I’m excited to go grocery shopping at HEB, buy HUGE pots to cook in (my kids eat more than ever), use an electric mixer, buy all the ingredients I can ever imagine, and travel as much as we can. I cannot believe all of the wonderful places in Austin and surrounding areas that we haven’t seen or even knew about. In a way, I feel like our life is just beginning, on a whole new level. I love it!
The kids are really excited to get back, but always talk about what they will miss here. They are full of statements like, “Let’s go to the beach everyday until we leave”, “Let’s talk Spanish like crazy so we don’t forget it”, and “We better love this old car because we’ll never have one again”. Little do they know about the old car thing. They will have one again………..very soon.
We didn’t move back to Manuel Antonio. After thinking it through for weeks, we felt it was better to stay in Nosara for the month of May, then head back to Texas. We are so glad we did! This past month has been a great time to reflect, relax, and prepare ourselves for the big move. Here are a few things May brought us here in Nosara:
Friends - We’ve gotten to know our friends better, had a few more weekends at church, and attended some fun events. Our sweet neighbor owns a private school, HSBA Academy, and organized a Carnival to raise money for the public school located 1/2 mile from her school. All of the money went towards a computer lab for Escuela de la Esperanza (my kids’ school). A school helping another school……amazing! It was tons of fun and a great turnout. Other friends had car problems, and with Billy being a mechanic, he was happy to help. Through that experience, we had the pleasure of spending more time with them, and growing that friendship. A sweet, sweet family. The list goes on…………
Work — Billy bought really good headphones to use through the computer, so that’s been a huge plus. But, he is ready to get back and hammer it hard!
School – We pulled the kids out of public school at the end of April, and I’ve been homeschooling them. I wanted to make sure they are on track for their grades next year, and are not behind an any subject. They’ve shown me that they’ll be just fine!
A Safe Home – I’m not sure how you describe this one. The short of it — my family loves these 2 boys, ages 9 and 11 years old. They were my kiddos first friends here in Nosara. They are good boys and have alot of potential to succeed. They need lots of love, support and trust. One of our huge-hearted friends is close to the family and agrees 100%. We worked out a deal: the kids will work for her doing chores around the house, in exchange for money to buy passports. Once the passports are in their hands, she’ll let me know, and Billy and I will buy their plane tickets to Austin. Each will live with us and attend school for 6 months at a time, separately. They will not come together. Since we’ve presented this opportunity to them, they have been so happy, wanting to work, and even surprised me with cleaning the dishes after breakfast yesterday morning. I love the light in their eyes, ready for a bigger picture of life. I pray they work hard, apply for the passport, and get on that plane! How wonderful for us……….and for them.
With less than a week left, our feelings and emotions are constantly changing. But one thing stays the same, our happiness, gratitude, and thankfulness that God allowed us to take this “SABBATICAL OF LIFE”. People ask, “Now that the adventure is over, what would you have done differently?” The answer, “Not a dang thing”!
I can’t say it enough, but THANK YOU for all of your support! We are better people because of our family and friends, and the support y’all have given us along the way. Thanks for hanging in there during our “frozen” and dropped Skype calls, and for us not returning emails and/or calls in a timely manner. We love you and can’t wait to see you all! And to our Costa Rican friends, thanks for making our adventure even better! There is a special bond with people you meet in another country. God is awesome to put you in our path of life! We’ll see you again one day soon and we THANK YOU for your friendship. We have memories to last a lifetime.
Get ready Texas, we are hungry for some UT Football and good ole’ Texas BBQ!!
Pictures of our last month here: