i choose to stay.

Last year, I wrote a post about FOMO (read: the truth about fomo as a peace corps volunteer). I mentioned how being a Volunteer means missing out on birthdays and other significant milestones back home. But, there is one thing I left out.


Because the thought of death still makes me uncomfortable, although death is as natural as life.

On Sunday, February 11, my Gramps was placed in hospice care. He passed away early in the morning on Saturday, February 17, the day after my 31st birthday. He was 87 years old.

With only 3 months remaining of my service, I choose to stay in Namibia. This was not an easy decision to make.

Throughout the course of the week, my days were filled with what can only be described as signs from God. Signs of comfort and peace and understanding. This helped guide me through the grief of being away from home during such a significant time for my family.



I choose to stay.

Because I want to continue your legacy of service to others.
Because I want to remember your glances as if you already knew you were looking at me for the last time.
Because I want to remember your big white smile and gentle laugh.
Because I know you wanted me to remember your life and not your death.
Because no matter how far away I am in distance, you’ll always be in my heart.

Dedicating my Peace Corps Service to my Gramps
Cary Holland, Jr.
November 13, 1930 – February 17, 2018

❤ Krystal

2 thoughts on “i choose to stay.

  1. Krystal, such a moving tribute. I’m only a third way through my service. I’ve lost a cousin I was close to. I’m sure there will be others as many in my family are at least my age (64) and not nearly as healthy.

    I’m also thinking about deaths, lives, life, and relationships as respect to my service.

    I’ve seen, first hand, how much your service means to you and I applaud your decision to stay.

    I know it wasn’t an easy thing to do, but following your heart and the signs is, in my opinion, the best we can do.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Vern. I’m sorry for your loss. I really appreciate your thoughts and kind words. It’s easy to become ignorant of death until it hits close to home. It’s something I am learning. I’ve been fortunate to have had time with all of my grandparents into my adulthood, which is unheard of for most people.

      Thank you, Vern.

      Liked by 1 person

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