Who’s Robynn?

I am delighted to announce today a change at Communicating Across Boundaries. Robynn Bliss, reader and frequent guest poster has agreed to write and post every Friday. This partnership will allow me to focus on some other writing projects that have come my way while still keeping the mission and spirit of the blog.

Canadian by birth, Robynn was raised in Pakistan and gets this between world’s thing. She is someone who works out her faith with fear and trembling and knows that doubt is part of the faith journey; someone who is not afraid to be vulnerable and give of herself. This is a gift not only to me, but to you as readers…..so today as an official start to the plan we get to hear Robynn in her own words on who she is! Enjoy!

The worst question in the world, in my mind, is: “So…. Where are you from?”

I especially hate that question when I’m trapped in a chair for a limited amount of time—the hair dressers, the dentist office, a waiting room. How can I ever begin to tell where I’m from, in a short amount of time, to a person who doesn’t really care but who feigns interest as part of their professional habit?

The question that I’m beginning to hate almost as much is: “Who are you?” But it’s a question that no one asks. The only person asking the question is me, “So Robynn, who are you? Who are you really?” And I’m not even sure it can be answered.

I can tell you what I like. I like a good cup of coffee. I love deep conversations about things that matter—soul things. I love my children.  I love summer time tomatoes.  I love clean sheets on my bed. I love chicken curry and pierogies; hummus and Pad Thai. I love laughing out loud. I love bangles. I love airports. I love foreign-to-me countries. I love watching my girls dance. I love my fifteen year old’s passion and sincerity. I love liturgical prayer. I love miracles. I love autumn. I love my Lowell man: his convictions, his wisdom, his humour, his companionship. I love it that God meets me in these places!

I could tell you what I hate. I cannot stand the endlessness and monotony of laundry.  I cannot understand hatred in the hearts of those who claim to be loving. I hate a dirty kitchen floor. I hate changing the kitty litter. I hate arguing with Lowell.  I hate to see my children hurt by the cruelty of others. I hate injustice. I hate things to be unfair.

I can tell you what I do. I work enthusiastically for Eden Vigil. I volunteer frequently at our local church and at our youngest daughter’s school. I follow my children into their activities: I make costumes for their plays, I make cookies for their parties. I track down the things they need for school projects (Connor’s making an edible diorama of the Battle of Stalingrad!?!). I taxi children to play practice, to the school newspaper office, to track meets, to home again. I try to love my neighbours. I meet regularly with women for coffee.

I can tell you my fears, my dreads, my sorrows (rats, our planned camping trip, not living in Asia anymore). I can tell you some of my story, what I’ve been through. You’d see pictures of friends and children, of death and grief, of hope and despair, of burnout and brokenness. You’d see the Ganges River, the Thal desert, the Himalayan mountains. You’d also catch sightings of the Rockies and the Prairies, of Benares, of Manhattan.  It’s a patch work life; a collage of colour and chaos, of joy, of glory, of sweat, tears and giggles. But it’s my life… and I love it!

This is me. Robynn Joy Bliss. Honoured to be married to Lowell for 18 years. Mother of three intense thinkers who articulate constantly their agonies and joys. I’m pleased to have a Canadian passport. I’m privileged to have a US Green Card. My childhood in Pakistan remembers Holy Trinity Church and boarding school, parents who loved me, a community who cheered me on. My adulthood recalls expectations disappointed and hopes dashed but a God who has been faithful throughout. I am more real than I’ve ever been. I’m more honest. I try to live inside out now. I’m committed to vulnerability and True Living.

It may be impossible to answer that horrendous question, “who am I?” but it’s a worthy thing to think about. Who are you? Who are you really?

Come along…. Let’s journey together… deeper into who we are… deeper into who we were made to be.


24 thoughts on “Who’s Robynn?

  1. Hey Robs, I’m so thankful and privileged that as much of our patchwork designs overlap as they do. I’m also thankful to have a place to read what new designs are being stitched. Thanks for this word that encourages depth and life.


  2. Robynn, so glad to know we’ll be reading your posts on Fridays. I’m way behind since we disconnect except for phone when we’re at special events like a Pakistan Reunion. Give my love to your Mom. We’ve just moved to Roch. NY quite to close to them. We’ll have to try and get together. I’m on Susanna’s computer , but this si Marilyn’s Mom.


  3. Thank you Robynn, for putting yourself “out here” and thank you, Marilyn, for making these connections possible.


  4. Yay! its lovely to read who you are now robynn, to get the chance to know who you have become subsequent to all my memories of you at mcs – your sunny, gentle, kind nature.


    1. Thank you Sue! It’s been a very long time…. How I would love to see you again and have the opportunity to ask, “So Sue…who are you?”


  5. I second Bettie’s affirmation, Robynn! I’ve so enjoyed your voice in your thoughtful and articulate postings here on CAB, and I’ll look forward to hearing your voice on Fridays! Although not a TCK like you and Marilyn, I love and appreciate seeing other parts of the world through your eyes. My journey through life is so enriched by the sharings of others, and you and Marilyn are at the top of that list!


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