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4.16.2010

It only took six weeks...

...for me to finally unpack the last of the stuff from our trip.

Well, technically I unpacked around midnight the night we got home (six weeks ago yesterday).  Before you go and say, "What the heck were you doing unpacking suitcases at midnight the night you got home exhausted after 30+ hours since leaving your hotel in Guangzhou?" realize that my mom was here.  AND she was willing to do my laundry...

So that night I dumped out all the clothes, and all the "stuff" that wasn't clothing went into four of my grocery bags.  I was smart enough to allow myself to not have to figure out where all that "stuff" was going to go just yet.  Because clothes are easy to put away.  They go in dressers and closets.  They've already lived in your house before.  But the "stuff" hasn't.  You know the "stuff" I'm talking about, souvenirs, momentos, airplane entertainment, travel pillows, electrical adapters, ...You've got to figure out new places to stick things.  And when your house is as "cozy" as mine is, that's not such an easy task.  So I was gracious to myself and decided to deal with the "stuff"another day.

Suddenly "another day" became nearly six weeks later!

Each day I woke up and told myself that I needed to work on just one bag.  After all, I was getting tired of the clutter in my room.  I also really wanted to be able to use the bench to my grandmother's vanity again.  But each day I'd find something to distract me during nap time, and by the time the kids went back to bed, I was too tired to be bothered at night.  So they sat.

For six weeks they taunted me. 

But yesterday I finally decided it was time to show those bags (and the "stuff" in them) who was boss.


 I won!

And no, I didn't just move the bags.  The souvenirs have been distributed, the momentos have been filed away (or recycled if duplicates), airplane entertainment has been put aside for the long road trips of summer, and all "travel accessories" have been returned to their Rubbermaid tub awaiting the next overseas trip...

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Which brings me to another thought.  I never talked about the trip home.  I think it has taken me six weeks to think about it because it was so bad.  No, not the children.  They were angels.  In fact this is what they looked like for some ten of the 13 hour flight from Shanghai to Chicago.
What was awful was how bad I felt.  So much of the trip is a blur in my mind.  I don't remember anything about the flight from Guangzhou to Shanghai, and only vaguely recall Ian entertaining our three blessedly well behaved kids in the Shanghai airport during our five hour layover so that I could sleep on some seats.  By the time we reached Chicago I wanted to drop on the floor and sleep, but of course we had to commemorate our youngest becoming a citizen...
When we finally stepped off the plane in NC I was so happy to be done traveling that I almost cried.  And then there was such a welcoming committee to love on us.  It brought about the adrenaline I needed to get home.  And when I finally went to the Medi-quick the next day I felt somewhat justified to learn that I had walking pneumonia ~ at least I understood why I had felt so bad.

Funny thing is that as dreadful as that thirty hours was, I still see myself doing it again someday...

14 comments:

Andrea said...

I'm afraid there's no cure for what still ails you my friend. ;-)

Vicki said...

Kristi, I am waiting for the announcement.
Vicki

Cindy M said...

YOU ARE NOT, I repeat, NOT, GOING WITHOUT ME AGAIN. I MEAN IT. Remember our dreams of three years ago...in the same week??!!

And I have a little bit of fun news up my sleeve that I'll be sharing soon.

AND I really NEED you here to motivate me to get rid of all the clutter that's taunting ME. I stink at it getting that stuff done.

Lisa said...

I soooo understand! I'd go again in a heartbeat! If only....well, let's just say I pray a lot!

I can't believe all three sleep 10 out 13 hours,that's amazing! I'm still sorry you were feeling so lousy. At least now you are home, healthy and unpacked!

a Tonggu Momma said...

Actually, I am impressed that it only took you six weeks. Not that it would take me longer or anything. Ahem. *blush*

And I so feel your pain about the trip home. I am so sorry - walking pneumonia is TOUGH. I've had it several times and cannot imagine a day-long travel day on top of it. I only puked the whole way home.

Nancy said...

I bet that was a great feeling to have those bags put away! I always feel a load lifted when I get a long overdue "project" done.

Glenda said...

I and many others were fervently praying for you during those 30 hours, so I know where your strength came from. He is faithful to take over when we can't.

Melanie said...

Loved the picture of the kiddos sleeping on the plane. That is just precious.

Also loved seeing Grandma's vanity bench. I remember her sitting there getting ready. I'm sure you're happy to finally see it too! :)

gracefortoday said...

Last time we did that flight with all three kiddos, I DID fall into my dad's arms crying. I know it is so exhausting,especially when you are sick! I love, love, love the pic of all three sleeping in the seats... pretty soon they won't all fit there! Bless you friend!
Jenny

Traci said...

COngrats on getting the stuff put away!
PS you make me sick... My kids only slept for 3 hours each and not at the same time of course! :)~
This is me sticking my tounge out at you!

Jenn said...

Love the picture of the kids asleep on the plane!! That is priceless!!

So, where to next?! ;)

Heather said...

I've only caught myself up on some of your blog since our trip to China. I love seeing pics of the kids. They are just so darn cute! BUT I had to post a comment on this post because, well, I still have the "stuff" you talk about lying in a corner of our entryway! I'm just wondering if I even have a good place to put it away, wondering where the heck that good place would be? HA! Now I know I have 6 whole weeks to find that special place to put Jake's lambs wool boots for next yr, or his gold new years' vest, or the gogi berry tea, or the leather jug of horse milk wine (ahhhh,,,,,what were we thinking), or the....... Yeah, 6 weeks sounds like a good goal for me too. Just wanted to thank you! Hehehehe!!!
Heather

White Lightning said...

that must have been one long trip back from china. i can see why you would have gotten pneumonia. you guys are awesome!

love the picture of the little ones knocked out on the plane. the arrival picture with them holding the american flag...adorable (pronounced with a french accent :)

TanyaLea said...

That photo of the kiddos sleeping on the plane is priceless! I'm sorry you were too miserable to remember much of it. Walking pneumonia is bad enough on the home turf, let alone coupled with busy travels, a precious new addition to the family and MAJOR travel/jet lag! Praise the Lord you are on this side of the fence now.

This 'announcement' everyone else is talking about has me on edge, too!