Just a few weeks before we came to Japan we bought the last Harry Potter book. Despite our eagerness, we didn’t open the book. We wanted to save it for Japan, to give us something to look forward to.
Our first few nights in Gifu, not knowing what else to do, we sat in our empty tatami rooms. Relaxing beneath the air conditioning, getting a break from the unrelenting heat, Aaron feverishly reading chapter upon chapter of Harry Potter aloud while I sat, quietly, knitting and listening.
Now, two years later, so much has changed yet so much has stayed the same.
On our last night in Gifu we sat in our empty tatami rooms, enjoying the artificial cold, and reading aloud feverishly, trying our best to finish The Da Vinci Code before returning it to the library today. I sat, quietly, knitting and listening.
Somehow, this seemed the perfect end to our time here in Gifu. The perfect way to spend our last night here. A reminder that even though so much has changed for us and within us, there is so much that is also still the same.
Despite the fact that there is so much left to do today before we leave the apartment for the last time, I feel calm. I feel calm knowing that we came, nervous and scared, and we overcame those fears and those hesitations as we set out on the greatest adventure of our lives. I am sad to say goodbye to all that we have known, all that our son has known, not knowing when or how we will be back. But we know that we will be back, someday somehow, that’s for sure.