Here I am, somewhat emerging from a cave.
I think bears have hibernated less than I have.
Instead of offering excuses as to why I have failed to write a blog post over the last 4+ months, all I will say is that I am very sorry.
There were probably so many chances for me to share stories, insight, wisdom, and maybe some laughs with you. But life can get in the way of things sometimes. I feel as if this break I have taken from writing anything other than college essays was purposeful. It’s okay to not always have something profound to say. I tried so hard to sit and type and hope something good would come out of it. My blog interface is full of nothing but half written, two word, or one phrase drafts. I could never finish. Nothing seemed good enough. So I sort of stopped.
I wasn’t fine with it at first. Yet now I am.
I know that time helped me grow.
As much as I wanted to share every little moment with you on my voyage this year, it wasn’t feasible.
So there is my apology to you, reader. If you are even still out there.
If you are, thank you. Your loyalty and sincerity are unmeasurably appreciated.
I suppose I could very well start by saying last Wednesday was my last day of class as a freshman in college. What a day. My heart filled to the brim in elation and relief after submitting my last assignment of the quarter, as that was the first sign of summer. And now as I await finding out my third and last grade on the edge of my seat (after refreshing my browser every 10 minutes for 4 days, I finally know that it’s an A), I can’t help but feel so amazed.
I’m amazed for one at how fast the school year flew by. I’m talking lightening speed guys. Where did the time go? 9 months in a new city. 6 months at a new job. 3 full-time quarters of school. I know people say “time flies when you’re having fun,” but it hasn’t always been fun.
I can concur that the first year of anything is the hardest.
I too am amazed at how much I have already learned. I’ve touched on subjects ranging from design, sketching, sound editing and videography to psychology, Spanish, print production, higher critical thinking, and writing. I think it has finally hit me that the knowledge I am obtaining right now is going to be used for what I will be doing in the future.
How neat is that?
Not only have I learned academically, I have learned more about life and independence in this season than in any other. I don’t think I ever made trips to the store in Walla Walla as much as I do here. Toothpaste, tampons, rice-a-roni, deodorant, and ice cream have all been items on my deemed “grocery list.”
But mostly ice cream.
Let’s not forget the dozens of times I’ve been to Target as well.
I’m amazed at the people who I have crossed paths with this year. So distinctly and purposefully. I have so much love and appreciation for every one of them. Each person seemed destined for me to meet. Many of the people I met seemed a mirrored image of people I already knew. It was easy to find bits and pieces of home in them. So much so, it was almost like I had already met them.
I could go on and on about how amazing it was to see the people God said he was going to place in Portland appear. God’s faithfulness has never proven more real. I’ve seen firsthand God’s promises transpire. Not once were any of my needs left unattended to. The only thing I felt lacked in life was comfort. But who needs comfort anyways?
Still there are days where I would rather be home. There were plenty of days where I felt like quitting (oh man were there a lot). Days where I was afraid. Days I was discouraged. Days where I was lonely. Sometimes there were just days I didn’t want to face the day.
But with every challenge, God was ALWAYS there.
He was never distant, never swayed, never stood silent, and never once doubted me.
Today, I am humbled. By all I’ve accomplished and endured. By all I’ve struggled with but conquered. By who I was and who I now am.
I never thought I was going to be able to face this transition: this abrupt change in season.
Yet here I am, alive and most definitely well, writing to tell you that it has all been worth it. The long nights, early mornings, late shifts, cries, prayers, discomfort, and chaos.
I’m amazed at God’s goodness really. And I know I say that a lot, but it never gets old.
Because of His steadfastness, I have been sustained. Not because of my works or because of all that I have done, but because of who He is. He is faithful when we are faithless, strong when we are weary, gracious when we are graceless.
If there were only one thing I could tell you about this year — if there were only one takeaway, it would be that God sustains and nourishes us when we place Him in the center of our lives. When we settle on the fact that the Lord is the only one that calms storms, fills wells, and brings peace, we won’t search for satisfaction in any place other than Him.
I’ve searched high and low for a word that could sum this year up, but I found that I could only sum it up in a song. Ironically enough, it’s called “Cello From Portland” by Beautiful Eulogy and it perfectly expresses how I have felt this year.
It’s onset is full of melancholy guitar tones. Ones that make you want to sit and gaze out a window at the pouring rain. Where all you can focus on is the drops hitting the ground in their promiscuous manner. Mellow you sit, focusing on nothing but the nature of the storm.
This perfectly illustrates my outlook on things from my fall term on through winter.
Somber. Bleak. Heavy. Cloudy. Ceasing.
The song begins to build with a drum and tambourine that make you want to tap your crossed feet under a table. The beat moves through your body and you feel alive. Soon enough, you’re on your feet. Standing in confidence and all certainty.
This illustrates how things feel now.
Joyous. Seasoned. Radiant. Directed. Potent.
There are so many more things I could share about how this year went. Countless things actually. I could speak of how lost I felt at the beginning and the doubts that continually went through my mind. How “meh” I felt in the middle. All compared to how determined and steadfast I feel now. But it would turn into a novel. Or two. Maybe even a trilogy.
All I really know is that I’m home.
This is where I need and am called to be.