An American who had been to the US Embassy in Lagos and was coming to Benin City, hand carried a note from the Consulate. The Consulate didn’t want to just courier the message, but have someone hand carry it. The note was to inform my husband that his mother had passed away a few days earlier. What to do? What was expected of him by his sister and family? What would our board say he should do?
If we stay overseas long enough, all of us will be faced with this dilemma. Grieving over the death of a loved one at anytime and in any place is difficult even as it is absolutely normal and expected. Living and working cross culturally usually means we find ourselves physically away from immediate family, relatives, our closest friends, and our faith community when a loved one dies.
This month’s article is drawn from Grieving From a Literal Distance by N. Ohanian. Ms Ohanian served overseas for many years and is currently in a doctoral program for Missionary Member Care. She provides practical helps for those who experience grief while living and working overseas and describes how to evaluate if a trip home or professional help is in order.
Diane, Peter’s Wife editor Continue reading 'Grief at a Distance'»
While we are parenting our children in a cross cultural setting, it is difficult to know whether we are doing it right or not. One of our best sources of information about how living outside our home culture affects our children is hearing from adult children of PWs. Kim Holland recently shared some insights about her cross cultural experience. She is writing more and will from time-to-time share more with Peter’s Wife. Kim was a TCK(Third Culture Kid). She grew up in Argentina and currently works as a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Lawton, OK, USA.
Continue reading 'TCK: Masterpiece or Mess?'»
Lea, a long-time friend of Peter’s Wife, shared a wonderful story of love and motherhood in a country torn apart by civil war. I trust you will be as touched as I was by this story of Daudi and his mother.
Diane, Peter’s Wife editor
An especially vicious civil war enveloped Burundi from 1993-2000. Those who suffered the most time were the women, children, and elderly. The following is a true account of a remarkable band of women and a little boy whose life was cut short by a preventable condition. However short his life may have been, he showed all of us that life was a gift that was meant to be lived. There may be many heroes on earth that have received their accolades, this is a story about some unsung heroes.
Continue reading 'A Mother’s Love'»
Grief. We don’t choose it, but we will all have to face it. Two precious PWs have recently shared their experiences of grief with me. I want to pass on some of what they wrote and lessons we can all learn from them.
Louise lost her son, Jedediah, on Christmas Eve just 52 days after his birth. She said,” When I had slept through the night and I woke at the first light, I knew. I knew that something was horribly wrong. I went to his bed and he was not there; only his shell remained. My son had gone on before me. I felt that I had abandoned my baby. My intellect would tell my heart that this was not true. SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) deaths happen all over the world, living in Mongolia had nothing to do with it. Jed was healthy. He had a full checkup by an American doctor just a week before he died. Still, my heart was not listening. When a blow this devastating comes to a heart, it shuts down
Continue reading 'Grief'»