I don't know exactly how to begin this post... Probably just best to get it out there.
Layne and I are leaving Nairobi and headed back to the United States. We have absolutely LOVED our time here, but there are a number of reasons why this adventure must come to an end.
Layne has accomplished everything that he needed to with the business. I am so proud of him and the amazing things he has been able to achieve here. He has succeeded not only in turning the company around, but he has also been able to grow Yum considerably and take it to a whole new level. Yum is now in a fantastic position, ripe for the next steps. Layne will continue his work with the company, but he'll be able to accomplish all of what he needs to do now from back in the States.
I have been sick since November. Some of you may recall me mentioning this on my instagram way back when it all began. First we thought it was food poisoning, then a parasite, then pregnancy (!!!!), then ulcers, then malaria. Then they ran out of ideas. Doctor after doctor has failed to diagnose me. After running every test under the sun, they shrug. More infuriatingly, they'll say things like "besides how you feel, you are the picture of health!" and "It's a good thing that I can't find what's wrong with you." It doesn't feel very good when you've been sick a full 2 months and are no closer to finding a diagnosis.
To clarify, this is more than a little sick. I am almost constantly nauseous, to the point where I can't sleep and can barely function. At night, I jerk awake every few hours, overcome with nausea. My body demands that I sit completely upright or even stand and walk around even though I'm so weak and tired that I'm on the verge of collapse. I've taken to laying (sitting) awake at night in the jacuzzi tub so I don't wake Layne. Meanwhile, I've had to keep up with my full-time marketing work + the additional contract work I do. It has not been easy, and I basically just waste away in bed all day and work furiously in between fits of nausea so strong that my brain con't focus on anything else. For the past month I've been a little better, but only because I've been on prescription-strength nausea medication and I've restricted my diet to packaged foods. I eat a lot of pop tarts and canned soup, and it's getting old real fast. When you're restricted to a bed and eating a minimal diet, exploring the new country you've moved to shifts from exciting adventure to being a massive challenge. We've had to move trips or cancel them altogether, or we go on them anyway knowing that I'll be limited and have to rest often. We're managing, but it's not a state I want to prolong.
This move was always temporary. My work is in the states, but so is the rest of our lives. We gave ourselves just five weeks to pack up our lives in D.C. and get out here, and there are definitely some strings we left dangling that need to be tied up. Not to mention that a move to Africa completely disrupts some of the other goals we have that we'd been working toward. It has been completely worth it to put it all on pause, but it's time to hit the play button on our real lives again.
Before this opportunity came along, we had always toyed with the idea of living abroad. Now that we've had the chance to, I know it's something I would love to do again. I have a better sense of what it entails and the sacrifices it demands, but also the blessings it can bring. I know better now what I would look for given the chance to live abroad again, but I feel that - at least for now - our place is back in the States.
This blog will not end just because we're headed back to the States. One of the benefits of our move to Nairobi was the invigorating energy it gave us to reengage and make the most of our lives and every moment. We have really packed our time here, trying to see and experience as much as we can. For the next few months, we'll be somewhat transient as we decide what's next and where we'll be. But wherever that is, we are committed to making it an adventure.
I hope you'll stick with me during this time as we slowly make our way to our temporary home, Salt Lake City. Layne's parents have an empty house there that is the perfect place for us to set up camp as we reacclimatize to America and make some more major life decisions. We need a central location where we can both interview, and look for the perfect city to settle down in. Before then, I have so much more to share with you - gorilla trekking over New Year's, another trip to Masai Mara, a visit to the Kenyan coast and the most amazing beach I have ever seen! Not to mention our upcoming pit stops in Paris, D.C., and Chicago as we head further and further west.
Wish us luck as we take off on our next journey and all of the adventures that await!