Thursday, April 18, 2013

Am I missing out?

As the end of the school years draws close, I realize how many things I would have been doing, and I am reminded  of everything I am missing out on.

I probably won't ever have the memories of dressing up for Prom or playing on a Varsity team. I might never go on a Senior trip or drive to the mall to hang out with friends after class. I may never walk across the stage to get my diploma.

Sometimes, I mourn for the things I am missing. Sometimes, I desire to be a normal teenager, and I wonder, "Does being a missionary kid cause me to miss out on the fun things in life?"

This week, I got my answer.

I spent a couple of days this week translating for a team of surgeons. People had traveled for hours, some even from out of country, just to come to the evaluations. They stood outside the doors, clinging to their families, and what seemed to be their last hope. One by one, they passed through those doors, only to leave a few hours later, some with their names on the surgery list. I stood on the inside of those doors, working with the doctors, loving on sweet babies and learning their diagnoses.

The next day, I went back to the hospital for the first day of surgeries. As I suited up in scrubs (thanks Dr. Casatelli) a surgical mask, and head and foot covers, I couldn't help but think of all the families who were depending on this surgery. I couldn't help but think of the lives that were being changed, and I am so thankful that I got to be a part of that.

I think I had always taken the things that go on inside an operating room for granted. I just knew that people went in there with something wrong, and they came out with it fixed. This week, I learned just how important each and every step is. I learned just how guarded every single utensil is, if just one piece of dust were to land on one, the whole set would have to be re-sterilized. Each motion is so precise, because it could mean life or death for that child.  Each patient is monitored so closely, from the moment they fall asleep due to the effects of anesthesia, to the moment they wake up, not having any clue what just happened to them.

I stood in the operating room as they put in a shunt and drained the liquids out of the head of a little girl with hydrocephalus. I watched as they untethered the cord of a child born with Spinal Bifida. I saw the difference that was made in the lives of these children when they were healed. It was seriously one of the coolest things I have ever done in my life.

So, to answer my question: no, I am not missing out by being a missionary kid, I am actually gaining. I may never go to high school dance or walk across a stage, but I am dancing with Jesus and walking on His path. God's plans for me include something bigger than high school drama, and I couldn't be more thankful for it.

"For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it." -Matthew 16:25


  1. I want to be like you when I grow up.

  2. Ever heard of Katie Davis from the book: Kisses from Katie?
    Here is her blog:
    You 2 inspire me :)
    God Bless,

  3. Most of us will never gain the experiences you have gained! The little things you may miss seem so trivial next to what you are doing! Being at the dance with Jesus always wins!!! (((HUGS))) from RI!

  4. You're definitely NOT missing out - school dances and Varsity teams are temporary, fleeting and time-fillers with drama, drama, drama. What you're doing makes such a huge difference. It's definitely needed to let loose and relax and have fun. But there are so many ways to do that right where you are. Blessings!

  5. Hi Addiysn,

    I have heard so much about you from my family! Love your mom's blog and am enjoying yours as well! You have been given such a wonderful gift to serve and experience all that you are at such a young age. Thanks for writing and helping us keep an eternal perspective. I hear you are coming to Bloomington/Normal in August! Everyone is so excited! We plan to attend the bike-a-thon too! I can't wait to meet you!

    Grace and Peace,
    Katrina Mitchell(Phil Mitchell's wife and mom to Molly, Noah and Caleb)

  6. Great post, thanks for sharing! I would much rather be in your shoes than in a normal high school, although I am speaking in retrospect as I am now 33. But I hated school and would have loved to do what you're doing!

  7. Thanks! I really needed to be reminded that I only gain being a missionary's kid right now. It doesn't always feel that way though.