life

I am unsure where to begin this post; there is so much going on that I don’t know where to start. This isn’t going to be one of those posts where I have all this great insight into myself or say anything profound. No, this is just going to be real me in real life…all the emotions and feelings that are coming with it today on this first Wednesday in April.

I’m not going to complain though and throw a pity party for myself. 2018 has had it’s fair share of challenges and tough moments already but I’m not throwing in the towel on it yet. Life keeps going, the world still spins, days still come so there is plenty of room to change and adapt to life’s circumstances.

This year was going to change things for me…I was going to pursue a new career, find out who I really am and what I’m really made of. I wanted to find happiness, but happiness within, peace about who I am and happy with the person I am. And take the steps to create my own life for myself.

January and February were filled with focusing on applications and class. I took the GRE in January and went to Montana to look at a school there; I was working on my application…the essay and resume and making sure all my t’s were crossed and i’s dotted. Applications were due in mid February so I was planning on celebrating when that was done and then life happens the celebration did not happen, which is OK. Life keeps going you know so it wasn’t a big deal.

In the process of all this, I was sorting out what I really wanted…where I really wanted to go. What I was really passionate about doing. I started to have this feeling that maybe my own mental health may suffer if I was a mental health counselor. I wanted to help people. I wanted to make a difference. I didn’t want people to feel alone the way I had. But the more I thought about it, I was nervous that maybe I couldn’t do it. But I let that thought subside because I needed to see what would happen in the application process. And plus, I was on pins and needles waiting to hear back from each school. Would I get an interview? Would they see my potential? Would they think I would be good at this? It kept me up at night. It wasn’t easy to make this huge change in my life even though I knew I needed to.

And so I started another 40 day prayer challenge the day I submitted my last application. I wanted to really rely on my faith and God in this time of uncertainty and change. I KNEW I couldn’t do this with just me and I knew I didn’t want to rely on others to get me through it. I wanted to rely on God and God alone. My theme for 2018 has been surrender and that’s what I wanted to do in this situation too. Surrender it all to God and let Him lead me to where I was supposed to go. And I have to say, making the choice to give these things to God and give to Him what you can’t control, it’s hard. It’s really hard and I still wrestle in it every day. I find myself constantly wanting or trying to control a situation and I have to consciously say I surrender. If I don’t? I hold onto it and all the feelings that come with it. I am definitely not a pro at this but I’m making the effort and trying to keep the act of giving it away in the forefront of my mind. I need that for my own peace and happiness.

I got an interview with 2 of the 3 schools I applied to and somehow that rejection from the one school cut me deeply. I have been rejected from other people before but being rejected from a school? I did not handle that well, I thought I would at least get an interview. So I have to admit, I was crushed and I took it personally. And even though I continued to surrender and trust God’s plan, I struggled with what this could mean. This could mean I may not get into ANY program. And through more praying and surrendering and conversation with God, I found peace in that potential. I knew God would guide me to where I was supposed to be and even if it wasn’t in my happy little plan, I knew He would take care of me but trusting that and not worrying about it definitely proved to be a challenge. But I had to give up this sense of control….all of this was out of my hands at this point and holding onto it all so tightly was not going to serve me well.

At this point, I had two options in school. I was unsure what would happen so each day I was pretty anxious awaiting the decisions. I got my first decision back and it was a NO. And while I was pretty upset, I was okay because it wasn’t where I thought and felt I was supposed to be. It did not derail me like the other where I did not even get an interview. I was disappointed of course but asked the question of “why” and so with that, I felt a peace. I had done all I could do and had given it my best and that’s all I can ever ask or expect of myself. And with that, I had one shot left. The school I really wanted to go to. The place I really wanted to live and felt like I was supposed to be in. And I had to wait a few more weeks for that decision.

The week of the decision was upon me and I was a ball of nerves all week and in all honesty, haven’t really slept good or that long since then. I didn’t know what day I would find out and was so anxious and nervous I couldn’t focus. It was intense but I also was praying a ton because I knew that would be the only thing to calm my nerves. I knew that I had to rely on God and trust Him in these moments. I knew I had no other option. Nothing would help me except praying. I felt like I fully surrendered myself to God in those few days. I felt like I had peace no matter the decision and that He would lead me to where I was supposed to be. I was anxious still but deep inside I had peace. And by no means am I trying to brag or pat myself on the back by sharing this, but to show the power or prayer and the power of focusing everything on God. And how He really does guide and provide when we can open our eyes to it even if it’s not what we thought we wanted.

Thursday came and I had a pretty intense conversation with my mom that lead me to believe I really wanted this. I wanted to get in. I wanted to move and figure out how to do this life thing myself and create my own way. Not relying on others but just me, no matter how hard it was. I wanted to know what I’m made of and I knew that in order to do that I had to go. I had a gut feeling I wouldn’t get in but I hadn’t totally given up hope yet. I checked my email during class and found the email in my inbox. I quickly and nervously logged in and saw the letter. I took a moment before reading and thought to myself “I trust you God.” And as my eyes scanned the page, I saw the rejection. And I was in class so I had to keep it together and am glad I did. I cried for maybe 5 minutes…called my Dad and cried a little more just saying it out loud, and then I was ok. I knew it wasn’t right, not meant to be right now, God had a different plan for me. And honestly? I felt like it was going to be OK.

n the rejection letter from the graduate school, the professor I had connected with and met in January told me to apply next year OR if I was interested in the school counseling route, to consider applying as they had some vacancies. I read that and it felt like kind of a sign! Should I go for it? Should I throw my name in the ring and see what happens? She gave me another option and opportunity in another field and maybe I should consider this option. I had been wondering if the mental health counseling route would be a good fit for my own mental health challenges. I had started thinking maybe it would be OK to not get in so I could better determine what I was really passionate about and wanting to do. But I didn’t want to make a hasty decision and a decision just because I wanted this to be my plan and I wanted to move. SO I decided to sit on it for a night or 2 and then it would become clear.

I had asked my Mom to meet for dinner and her and my dad showed up, which I thought was odd. I was telling them about the school counseling path and what she had said to me and was blabbering on about it. As I talked more and more, the better I felt. The more at peace I felt about the whole thing and I had other options now and maybe better options for me, my goals, my personal mental health, and future.

Then after I was done eating, my mom said she had to tell me something and I could tell it was bad. And I had a gut feeling about what it was going to be about. She told me that she got a call from Uncle about Di. Di was in the hospital and had been diagnosed with cancer in both her lungs. And somehow I did not freak out. I did not lose my cool and actually still have not yet, not completely anyways. I wanted to know how this happened but at the same time, I knew deep inside something was wrong and had been for a while. I had a feeling at Christmas we were going to lose her this year, I just had this feeling. But my mom said that Uncle was going to talk to the doctors the next day about treatment options so maybe it would be OK and she would make it through this. And then the reason for me not getting into school became more clear, I wasn’t supposed to get in so I could be here to help take care of Di while she was in treatment. I felt SO much peace about that. God did not make me decide, He did that for me, and I was grateful. Incredibly grateful.

I was in shock….called a few friends and told them the terrible news but still trusting God’s plan in all of this. The next day, however, we learned that there was not going to be any treatment options and she would not be here long. Oh, and her and my Uncle were still in Florida so we couldn’t even see her. We hadn’t seen her since Christmas or right after before they left for Florida. And again, I didn’t really react. It was like that premonition I had those months ago, had already prepared me for this. It was truly strange. However, I felt completely drained and I felt incredibly sad but not inconsolable. A lot of me couldn’t believe it was happening and it seemed surreal so perhaps that is part of my reaction. My uncle and my mom were not doing well and my mom not doing well made it harder for me too. They were trying to figure out how to get her home, that was my uncle’s #1 concern.

Well they got her home….on Tuesday, 10 days ago. It was a chaotic mess but they got her home. And I’m so grateful they did.

I had a crazy weekend before they had gotten her home. I was really busy with multiple different events and things I had to do and I ended up hitting a curb that did $2300 of damage to my car. Honestly that’s what sent me over the edge. I completely lost it. I couldn’t take much more bad happening right now. So with all the bad news and happenings, and the non-stop schedule I had, I crashed Monday. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t function. I felt like I was drowning and I may never get up from it all. I felt lost and heartbroken and I couldn’t get a grip on reality and what was going on in my life. So I took a day off from work to just get myself wrapped around this whole thing. All of it. I didn’t have a chance to process any of it because I had been on the go and didn’t get to just sit and deal. And that’s what I did on Monday. And that caused a whole ordeal at work. I felt too depressed to work and I even told my boss and apparently it wasn’t a valid excuse for them. So Tuesday, the day Di came home, was one of the absolute worst days I’ve had in a very long time. I just needed to take care of myself and I felt that wasn’t allowed or approved of and it just made me feel more alone and isolated than I already had been feeling. I just didn’t need that extra stress going on with everything else on my plate. Not to mention, now that I didn’t get into a program, I had NO idea what I was going to do next.

I was unsure if I could handle seeing Di. I wanted to but I had texted with her over the weekend and felt like I had said what I needed to say and had peace about everything. But I also knew I would regret if I didn’t go see her but wanted to remember her in a good way and not in a really sick way. Anyways, I went and have been going every day since she’s been home. And I’m so thankful for this time I do get with her. A lot of the time she’s been asleep but she knows I’m there.

And on Wednesday (a week ago) I had decided to email about the school counseling track. I thought a lot about it since the idea was introduced to me and decided I should go for it. I believe I would be a really awesome school counselor…it will allow me to make the difference I’m longing to make….and has the potential to make a true impact on someone’s life. And I really didn’t have anything to lose by trying. If I didn’t get in, it would just mean it wasn’t meant to be and God would guide me on another path. So I took the steps to “throw my hat in the ring” and on Thursday while I was visiting Di, I got a phone call from the program director about my email to him earlier that morning! It felt very meant to be. I ended up talking to him for over an hour and the more he was explaining about the program, the potential for a career, and potential future options for a career, I knew this had been my answer all along. This is what I was meant to do. Di was there when I got the call, I feel REALLY good about that, and I think it can really get me to where I want to go—which is to be helping people and making a difference in someone’s life. And if I get to help a child in choosing and creating their future, I think that will truly be fulfilling for me.

So! Yes! I am starting a new journey in my life. I’m moving to Montana (never thought I would say that!) in June and starting a 2 year master’s program in July at Montana State University! I will graduate with my masters in education and will be able to start working as a school counselor right away!

God has a plan. Always had a plan and I just had to breathe and trust He would guide me to where I’m supposed to go and who I’m supposed to be.

I have to admit that losing Di has been one of the toughest things I’ve experienced and been through yet. I know I’m young and there is plenty that can happen but so far? It’s been pretty damn awful. Thankfully our relationship has always been strong and she knows I love her and I know she loves me and so we have this peace with one another. I don’t feel like there is one thing left unsaid between us and I feel blessed by that. She taught ME how to be an aunt and what a gift being an aunt is and can be. I learned from the best and I love my kids with all my heart just like she loves me with hers. She taught me how to love with my whole heart and look at each day as a gift and to cherish moments, people, and whatever life brings you. I have been beyond blessed by her support, encouragement, and love throughout my whole life. She has been a pillar for me in my 27 years and I would not be the person I am today without her. I’m going to miss her more than I can even say but I trust God in this as much as I trust Him in everything else. Without Him I wouldn’t have the hope and encouragement that she will be with Him soon and free of this pain.

Life is not always easy and there are many ups and downs along the way but I have learned that if I have faith, truly trust in God’s plan, no matter what happens, I know it will all be OK. He is taking care of me and there every step of the way through the good and bad that life throws our way. Everyone deserves to be happy, including me. I want to be happy with the person I am and striving to be. I’m getting to the point where I no longer feel like I need to apologize for who I am because I’m pretty great just how I am. And it’s incredibly refreshing to feel free and clear and ready to move on and thanks to God, I am on my way.

with a huge thankful heart…

 

 

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closing out twenty seventeen

2017. what a year. a year of growth, changes, adventures, heartache, the starts of things, the end of things, also a lot of the same things too. what a year.

I like to recap and think back on my years. particularly this year. this year I have taken steps in a real way to change things for myself. change how I interact with others, change how I talk to myself, change how I see myself, and even go so far as to start the steps to change my career.

I had the privilege to travel in every month except March & July. I got to go to 3 new states…all in the Northwest…got to see lots of friends and make some really wonderful memories. I let go of a lot that I’ve been carrying around for a very long time and mourned some people no longer apart of my journey.

The length of time we have to live out full years has been on my mind recently. I have had the opportunity to see the majority of 27 years…..27 years of learning, adventures, forming relationships…27 years to live. And I was reflecting how I’ve wasted a lot of them….wasted them being upset and worrying about what’s coming next or upset with myself instead of enjoying each moment I get to live. Life’s too short to be upset with others, upset with yourself, or not living life how you want.

During this year it was brought to my attention (more than once) about self talk. My self talk, in full disclosure, is pretty damn terrible. I would NEVER talk to other people the way I talk to myself. I am so hard on myself about nearly everything. It’s loud and it’s negative and nothing silences it. I struggle with not letting it get to me and I’ve had to face it a lot more this year in different ways. For some reason this year I have felt very unworthy of anything good. I’ve allowed the thoughts and actions of others define my worth. I HAVE allowed it. And so by realizing that I am the one allowing, I get more upset with myself. And the nasty cycle of negative self talk became more frequent and more detrimental honestly. How am I supposed to form relationships with others or find myself being open to dating or a real and true romantic relationships if I talk to myself that way? I can’t expect someone else to respect me or care about me when I don’t feel that way about myself. I have spent PLENTY of my years in this space of awful self talk and I am making a promise to myself here & now to change that. Change how I talk to myself and stop others’ opinions of me define how I see myself. Those are conscious choices and choices I need to make if I want to continue down the path I want to be on.

Truth be told I have not done a very good job of being open with others this year. I think it’s partly due to this head space I’ve been living in & the other part is me trying to be different and better (which I guess I could attribute to the head space). Regardless, I’ve become much more closed off and keeping my thoughts & feelings to myself. I’ve been doing a lot of internal evaluating and reflecting and there have been changes that have come with doing those things. I haven’t wanted to share and share and share the ways I used to. Sharing can lend to pity & misunderstanding & sometimes, unhelpful opinions. I do not want pity for sure & sometimes the more I share, the more misunderstood and alone I’ve felt so if I don’t share, I can’t be misunderstood right? Sure, in theory. On top of that, I allow others’ opinions to make my decisions. I gave that decision making power away and I needed to take it back. It has been challenging to have to honestly look inside and ask myself what I want. But I believe within this new approach, I’ve become more selfish and definitely have pushed people away. It is not my intent in anyway but I believe it’s become the reality. I have become content with myself enough that I don’t need other people like I did and instead of being a friend to others, I’ve become selfish and incredibly closed off. Plus I know that so much of what I always communicated with to others I have to deal with and move past on my own. Another piece to this is that in all honesty, I haven’t wanted to let people in. When I’ve let people in in the past, it’s caused pain and hurt. So in many ways I have been scared to open that door again. But I am who I am and I don’t need to hide things I’ve felt shame about anymore. Those who love me most don’t and won’t care and that’s what I have been trying to hold onto in the struggle of this opening up business.

As I’m writing all this out I realize it’s confusing. It’s confusing because they almost seem conflicting ideas. I want to be more internal so I don’t rely on other opinions but I also talk super negatively to myself and allow others’ feelings about me define myself? It doesn’t make sense in many ways but it also makes a lot of sense. I believe there is a fine line between opening up and letting others in and remaining true to yourself and making choices that are best for you. Oh and sticking to those decisions and allowing yourself some grace and a little love. In the end, you only have yourself so if you don’t speak kindly to yourself or love yourself, how miserable a life are you going to have? Well a little advice as someone who has been there for a long time, it can lead to the the most miserable life. Love yourself, seriously. Haven’t mastered it yet but working my way there.

Back to my original thought of LIVING life, living life includes being open to letting others in. Sharing stories of success, failures, annoyances, joys, challenges, triumphs is what makes life doable. It makes it worth it when you share and you celebrate with your closest people or you are having a tough day and you need an ear and someone to tell you it’s going to be OK. And loving yourself is part of your job description.  THAT is what living life is about. We’re all in this together and I forgot that in the midst of my journey this year.

SO as I do….I want to thank those who have remained present and there for me when you may have felt that I shut you out. I want to apologize to those where I put all my “worth” eggs. That’s a huge responsibility to feel you have and an unfair one at that. I love and value those so much but it’s not fair at all. For those I pushed away and seemed so self involved, I am sorry. It was truly never my intent. There was a lot of work that had to be done this year and I did the best I could. But I never meant to push away or hurt anyone.

Life is tough you know? We face so many awful and debilitating situations and circumstances and it’s clear to me it’s not going to get any better. But I am starting with loving who I am, giving myself and others much more grace, deserved grace. We have to stick together. Sticking together, relying & loving on one another other makes all the other crap doable, livable, survivable, and OKAY. It’s not necessary to walk through the tough stuff alone and I see that now.

in terms of my plans you may wonder? I’m working on it. I’m doing the things that need to be done to determine where my next steps in 2018 will lead me. Not to sound so vague, but in truth, I don’t know what’s going to happen. I don’t know where I’m going to land. I want to go to school in the fall…I want to move somewhere amazingly beautiful where I can continue to grow into this new version of myself. I want to get this master’s degree and maybe even my doctorate some day. I want that accomplishment. And THEN, I want to help people. I want to make a difference. THOSE things have not wavered. I feel called and driven in that and so I’m doing what I need to do now to make that happen. God has a plan you know? God will guide and place me where I need to be and when I need to be there. It’s been challenging but it’s going to be worth it when I am where I know I need to be. Portland? Utah? Colorado? Wisconsin? California? Arizona? STL? Where will I go? I have no idea. But God does and so I’m ok with not knowing today.

2017, what a year. these are without a doubt the biggest takeaways and things I want to share mostly to remind myself and hope to bring a little light and peace to someone else’s life. We aren’t alone and shouldn’t have to walk this journey by ourselves. Give people a chance. I have a feeling it will be worth it when I can change how I look at things.

2018: I’m ready for whatever God has in store for me.

 

new beginnings

If you don’t know me or haven’t talked to me in a while, when I turned 27 I started on this quest to find myself. I know I have said that many times and in many situations prior but I really meant it this time. I could feel it was crucial to my future and my future happiness.

As I have explained to close friends and family, I have been feeling like I’m sitting in this bowl (in my mind, it’s this small purple one I’ve had since I went to college) and there is press and seal covering it and for years, I was content at the bottom…not needing to think or make decisions for myself. I have been too scared to make a decision because I don’t want to disappoint others or am too scared to actually change. Recently, I have felt like I’m at the top of the bowl banging on that press & seal and not being able to break through it. I want to break through it, desperately. I am no longer content at the bottom being miserable. And I know there has to be change. It’s time to think for myself…make decisions that will make ME happy….and follow my heart.

I knew that in order to get out from the bottom, I needed to deepen my relationship with God. God and I go way back and I like to think he spends a lot of time chuckling at me with my grand plans and my hopes and dreams. On June 26th, I started a 40 day prayer challenge. And if you know me, you know I like dates and the anniversary of important things and I believe, June 26th will remain a very important day in my life.

 

The 40+ days I’ve spent praying really hard and looking at who I am, where I want to go, and asked God to continue to open my ears and my heart to where He was guiding me and that He would get the glory for whatever happened because I sure don’t deserve it. There is a lot of other stuff in there, but that is at the core of where my prayers have been focused. During all this I struggled a lot (ok that is probably not surprising) but I reached new lows…lows I haven’t experienced before…lows that made me question everything: who I am and where I belong. Why was I not worthy of all the things I wanted in life? Why did I feel not good enough for anything or anyone? Those questions ran through my head time and time and time again and then I found myself questioning the most important relationships–my dearest friends and confidants and my parents. I hate that I felt that way but I did. I was at the bottom of that bowl. And worst of all, I felt completely 100% alone.

I didn’t know if it was going to get better and not that I was questioning God because I don’t know that I was but I was not recognizing that He was there with me all along. I got too caught up in my own brain and my need to control, I wasn’t truly giving Him the power. Once I realized that, I felt less alone and I was more than capable.

The one person I really needed to be honest with and fix my relationship was with my Dad. He and I don’t always see eye to eye and have a lot of similarities that don’t help that all the time but we have had many ups and downs this year and that has been extremely hard on both of us. I felt extremely compelled to finally talk to him and be honest. It was weighing on me every moment and I absolutely hated the discord. He has always been one of my strongest supporters and inspiration for me so not having that in my life during this was killing me. I had been so scared of what this conversation would look like but I knew it had to happen to really start being true to myself. Our conversation was so wonderful and was the best conversation we have ever had. And I know God was there with both of us that day. I was honest…I told him I was not happy at work and while I desperately wanted to want to be there, my heart was not in it. I wanted it to be…it’s all I ever have thought of and known. I want to make him and my mom proud and I feel that by feeling that I’m not happy I will disappoint them more than anyone has before. On top of that, thinking about making a career change and leaving is really scary. And I have NO idea what I would even want to do! At one point out of no where he suggested I look into becoming a counselor. It was a sign! most don’t know, but I have thought of that off and on for over a year. I was too scared though. I was too scared to make any decision. Again, for so long it was just easier to sit in fear than to rock the boat.

Anyway, I KNOW God was in that conversation because I had asked for a sign a few days earlier in my prayer that God would continue to guide and direct me in what I was supposed to be doing with my life. I needed and still need the guidance. But my dad saying that to me in our conversation was my sign. The more I talked about it or shared with others, the more excited I have become.

Counseling, I can see it! Me helping people, making a difference in someone’s life. I finally feel like this is my calling…this is what I’m supposed to be doing. It doesn’t matter that I’m 27 and completely changing my career. I feel and know God has spoken and instead of trying to control, I’m giving it to Him to guide and carry me through on this plan. This is my time and God has said a lot of “not yet” in my life when I feel like He should be telling me “yes yes yes” but this one is a yes, now.

I feel the most comfort and peace I have felt since I graduated college. I don’t know where I’m going to go or how it all looks but I am open to any and all ideas and keeping my ears listening to God.

It’s a brand new beginning for me and I feel so confident and content about it that it brings me to tears. God is good and I know no matter what, He is there with me every step of the way.

I want to thank my closest friends and my family…especially my parents for supporting me and being there for me through my post college journey. It has been challenging in many ways but I have grown and feel so blessed to continue to have such an amazing circle in my life. I love you all so much.

I don’t share this to brag on my new goals/dreams/plans that have come from this 40 day prayer challenge. I share and write this to give hope to others. To show that because of digging deeper in my relationship with God, it has brought me into a new mindset with a different perspective. It just happened to impact my goals for my life. God gets all the glory here….He is the one carrying me along and guiding me. No matter what is going on in your life or things you may be dealing with, God is right there with you. And no matter what He is saying, trust Him because I know it will be worth it.

cheers to new beginnings and all that’s to come!

 

Aside

coming home at twenty two

How interesting it is to return to a place where I spent the past 4 years of my life and feel like an actual visitor.

I returned on Friday night and spent the evening catching up with my rooms over some delicious Mexican and margaritas, a now tradition for us. We were able to chat and laugh and get a good night’s sleep, despite a bit of a rude awakening around midnight…haha

Saturday was a day of reliving the college life. Saturday was the first time I had driven around campus in quite a while and just passing by Moseley and Alamance, I was reminded of the last couple of weeks of school and all the “lasts” but soon after those memories came those of my “firsts” at Elon. My first visit. My first weekend. My first homecoming weekend. My first Alpha Chi events. It’s such a weird feeling to really only think about the book ends of my time in college and miss everything in between. It was so wonderful catching up with friends who are also alums and those still at Elon. I also realized how much my life really has changed since graduating. I no longer see those things I did while I was in school as important or as “big of a deal” as I did then. I guess that’s a good thing though, right?! I went to the new/old Alpha Chi house and ran into all my friends, whether they be alums or undergrads and it was like I just traveled back to last fall when I was still a student. It was so normal yet I felt so separated and distant still. It truly is the strangest feeling I’ve experienced in a loooonnnnggggg time. It was wonderful seeing everyone and it made me so thankful for all my friendships despite how they’ve changed and how we’ve grown together and apart but yet, we can all still laugh and get along and appreciate one another.

Despite all the fun, it was very challenging balancing my time with everyone. I didn’t get to spend time catching up with some friends I hadn’t really gotten to talk to in 5 months or those I wanted to see more because it may be a while before I get to see them again. But the weirdest thing is that while my most of my really close friends and a few of my best friends were there–the larger group who impacted me the most while at Elon was missing. I felt almost  lost without Jeanine, Kierstin, Liane, and Coleman there. We spent so much time together the last 2 years that being at Elon, with the kids we went to school with, living the typical Elon way of life, made me so incredibly sad and lonely knowing they weren’t there. Yes, Taylor and Jason were there, but the majority of the group was missing. I thought a lot about our nights at Kierstin’s and J&J’s apartment and just had a huge smile on my face. Yes, we didn’t always do the most ‘exciting’ things but the fact I still enjoy thinking about it, means more to me than anything else. I was driving back to Taylor’s apartment on Saturday night and I drove the way I normally would “home” to Manning and had to tell myself, out loud, not to turn to go to Manning because it was so routine and normal for me. It was so strange but I did that drive, that late, so many times after late Mario Kart sessions, movie nights, game nights (no Risk for us, right J, K, L?!) :), or just long life chats. Those late night drive home were a time for me to reflect on my friendships and truly appreciate to call, whoever it was at the time, my true friend. Were things always rainbows and sunshines? No. Did we always get along really well all the time? No. But regardless of that, we stuck by one another and that to me is what makes it all the more true and special.

Don’t mind my rant on that–it was just a weird sensation to feel like being at Elon was normal and like I went there, but also feel like I was a visitor and it was only for a brief time, but it was really what I needed to push myself forward to my “real” life.

Elon will always be home, no matter what, but I realized yet again, it’s the people that make the home, not the place. Looking forward to coming home when we can all reunite again…let’s make it in Italy…thoughts?? 🙂ImageImageImage