Over the last few years I have had the honor and privilege of doing several debriefs. There are a couple that really stand out. The most recent young lady articulated something very clearly that several have said.
She said this, ‘I just wish people would stop asking me if I had fun!’
She then went on to say that she did not have fun. She was thousands of miles away from home and felt very isolated. No running water, no air conditioning, seeing heart wrenching situations, being handed babies by families who could no longer care for them. FUN?! NO WAY!!!
But, she also wouldn’t change the experience for the world AND she would do it again…indeed, I believe she will!
When you are talking with people who have been overseas try to be sensitive to the fact that it was probably NOT a ‘fun’ experience. In all likelihood it was anything but fun. Even first-world experiences are rarely ‘fun’. It may end up being fun or there maybe fun things that happened, but be sensitive to the fact that ‘fun’ may not be the word they want to hear.
Ok, I am writing this down I can think of example after example of this! Some of them were people in Christian work others for companies or government. (Any Army people want to talk about this?!)
I’d love to hear from you on this so join in the conversation!