On my love for Scarlett O'Hara

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

I need to re-read Gone with the Wind.

Living in southern Georgia, I decided to read it last fall, and it definitely helped me understand the culture I'd been immersed in and made the interesting characters in my life even more endearing to me.

Although the book is lacking what other stories have-namely a virtuous protagonist-I still fell in love with it and with Scarlett O'Hara, her frustrating character flaws and all.

Gone with the Wind is far too long and complicated for me to explain in a short blog post. There's a lot going on with the war, the Old South and New South, the Yankees, etc etc.

But basically Scarlett is super frustrating and annoying. She's spoiled and gets pretty much anything she wants. She can manipulate the people around her to giving her what she wants, not what's best for her. And that kind of changes when she meets Rhett Butler, but things are still complicated because there's all these mind games going on.

Nonetheless, I think that's why I like Scarlett.

The other day I found myself on the phone explaining to my little sister about a recent falling out I'd had with God. How I was so frustrated by my state in life and how some people prayed and got whatever they wanted, and I was still very single, not living on my own, etc, etc. I said something along the lines of, "Basically I want God to change things but I just can't manipulate Him like I can other people because He is God, so I need to get over it."

And that summed things up pretty well. I can be like Scarlett. I want things my way. I get frustrated and mad and upset when they don't go my way. I think about how I can make things change.

And the good thing about being in a relationship with God is that He is stronger than I am. I can't manipulate Him into giving me what I want, even if it's not good for me. Is it humbling? Yes. It's very very humbling to live the life I do and not tweak things into the life I want. But if this is what God sees fit, this is what I want.

I get sad when I see Scarlett because she had so much potential. Her stubbornness could've been harnessed into a humble perseverance and determination. But no one made her that way. The people around her enabled her to be the spoiled monster she was. Yes, ultimately Scarlett is responsible for her own actions, but it takes a village to raise a child, etc etc.

I'm trying not to be like Scarlett. I'm trying to allow myself to be challenged and to be told "no, that's not good for you" and to be obedient.

Keepin' It Real.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Ask my teammates from last year and they'll tell you one quality I have: a desire for things to be real, honest, authentic, and organic/natural. Since I'm melancholic-sanguine (don't ask), this means I have a need to know that people are real people and they aren't just cheery all the time. It also means I have a need for people to know I'm complicated and my life isn't always easy.

I'm frustrated with my life right now.

I wasn't sure I wanted to blog about this, because being melancholic-sanguine, I can tend to be rather mopey, but out of a need for "realness" I am going to.

I am frustrated by my life. I am frustrated by my living situation, by my job, by my lack of friends. And I am frustrated by my God.

When I was making the decision to follow Jesus, I don't think anyone told me how much it can sometimes suck. Probably I'm not supposed to say that, but realness here. I guess it is obvious and should be inferred, I mean, Jesus wound up crucified, so a disciple can't expect much better. I can look at the martyrs and think, "Wow that is crazy." And in the next second I think, "That could never be me." And it probably won't. I probably won't be fed to lions or burned alive or crucified upside down for following Jesus.

Instead, I'll face a frustrating reality: promises of God just don't always seem genuine, and I'm not nearly as good of a disciple as I ought to be or wish I were. Sometimes the words I read in Scripture feel fake or too good to be true.

But that doesn't mean they're not true.

I wish I could talk to the saints and really hear about their lives. In many cases I see great loss and yet great beauty. I want to hear about the challenges and difficulties and know that I'm not alone.

Did St. Therese have moments when she just hated everything? Was St. Margaret so frustrated at God's favor in others' lives and the apparent lack thereof in her own? Did St. Mary Magdalene get frustrated with the people who tried to love her?

Did the saints have moments when they went to prayer and had nothing nice to say?

I think I would make a good Israelite, in the way that I am grumbling in the desert. I can hear them in myself, "I don't want to be here."
"You said you would follow Me."
"I didn't know it would be like this."

I know these are the times that purify. I know these are the times that strengthen. I know these are the times where I'm supposed to be able to show my love for the Giver and not just the gifts.

If I learned one thing as a missionary it was that my faith is very emotional and not always rational. And these are times where I'm reminded that God is God no matter how I feel and no matter what I want. And if I could change Him, He wouldn't be God anymore.

But it always takes time for my heart to soften. And that's okay. I will keep trying to be open and honest. I will keep showing up even when I have nothing nice to say.


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Last year my hometown had one of its worst winters. It snowed and snowed and got colder and colder. Every time I talked to my parents the boys were out of school for snow. Meanwhile, I was enjoying a long long beautiful Georgia spring and told them their stories of snow made me want to stay in the South.

One of my biggest fears moving back to the Midwest has been weather related. Snow, cold, feeling cooped up, and those days where the sun hides behind the clouds loomed over me.

We got our first little bit of snow last night. We had had flurries before then, but this morning it was enough to cover my windshield.

And I have to admit, I was kind of excited last night as I watched the snow fall.

It's fun to see the world look new, covered in white. I get motivated to sit and crochet and snuggle and want to watch movies or read and read and read. I am reminded by the seasons of life (something I really missed in Florida). Sometimes life feels like winter.

Right now I'm enjoying wearing scarves and sweaters, but I know that will probably fade. I've only got about three weeks left of classes, and I'm so excited!! Next semester I'll just be working--no classes until, God willing, I get into nursing school. I'm looking forward to crocheting, reading, praying, and working out in ways my schedule hasn't been allowing, as my time "off" has been time to study.

I'm surprised with myself, and I'm thankful. I'm hesitant to admit it, but it's true: I'm enjoying winter.

Clean your life

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

My senior year of college over Christmas break I remember being so stressed and sick (bronchitis) and feeling like my life was out of control.

I drove back to school and cleaned my house.
I met with my spiritual director and went to confession.

I called my mom and she said, "You just needed to clean your house and your life."

And sometimes I have days like that.
Yesterday that led to me taking a 2 hour nap at a dear friend's apartment (God bless you. forever and always).
Today I woke up early and cleaned and drank tea and cleaned and painted my toenails and cleaned and went to confession.

And I have a clean room and a clean soul and a clean life.

I'm so thankful.

My Birthday Present From Me to You.

Monday, October 27, 2014

For the past few months I've been not looking forward to my birthday as I feel like I'm getting super old and I had no clue this is what my life would look like at 25.

I'm glad I've had the experiences I've had. I know I'm where I need to be. But I never thought I'd be 25, working at an upscale fast food restaurant, and going to community college (insert growth in humility, etc etc).

In reflecting on the past 25 years, I've seen that God has allowed me to have some amazing experiences! Some of these include:
-graduating college
-being a missionary for two years
-living in five different states (six if you count where I was born)
-visiting Spain
-going on mission to the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Poland
-having an amazing family and getting to watch my littlest brother's birth
-being in some special weddings
-encountering Jesus in a real and deep way

I could go on and on.

It makes me excited.

Sooo for my 25th Birthday, I decided to come with my "30 before 30" or my list of things I want to accomplish in the next five years! Maybe I'll still be making just above minimum wage and going to community college, maybe I'll finish most of these. We'll see!!

These are some of my dreams and hopes, and I am sharing them with you. I hope you're inspired to dream and hope in your life and are able to support me in becoming a better version of myself.

30 Before 30
  • pay off student loans
  • take guitar lessons
  • graduate college round 2
  • master a signature eye shadow look
  • get my BMI below 30
  • fall in love
  • make a quilt 
  • visit Yellowstone
  • go to an Auburn game (ideally with my friend Brittany!)
  • become a morning person
  • run a marathon (I'm crazy. I know.)
  • move back to the South
  • have visited at least 30 states (50 States before 50 goal)
  • learn to drive a stick shift
  • be a godmother (again)
  • do a 30 day clean eating thing
  • master Helen's guac recipe
  • learn to make iced coffee
  • scuba somewhere cool (ideally with Margaret and Emily)
  • acquire a colony of bees
  • take my family/brothers to Disney World
  • visit Maine in the fall with my Mom
  • grow a garden and start composting
  • finish reading the whole Bible
  • build a bookcase or some furniture
  • learn to change my oil and replace my brakes
  • be able to do T25 without modifying
  • help someone have a baby (did I mention I'm crazy? #aspiringtobeL&Dnurse
  • get really good at walking in heels (or find a pair of heels I can really walk in)
  • register at a parish

I'd love to hear about your goals, hopes, and dreams! Join me and Brittany in creating a 30 before 30 or 40 before 40 or 100 before 100. Or whatever floats your boat.

The end.

Fall in the Midwest

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The last two years I didn't really experience fall.

In Florida the palm trees didn't lose their leaves.
In Georgia the pine trees didn't change colors (although the cotton won my heart).

And now I'm in Illinois and I'm struck by the leaves, especially the bright yellow and bright red ones.

I made a friend last week named Isabel. Today we went on a walk by all the beautiful historic homes and took in the leaves.

It was a great opportunity for holy leisure.
I remembered that I'm a person and not just a worker or a student.
I remembered life is bigger than my schedule and my paycheck.
Although I "should've" been doing homework, it was beautiful to just be and to celebrate life here and now.

Looking Back

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Yesterday was a hard day.

Losing my keys/wallet left me in such a tizzy, frustrated with my plans that were changed and disappointed that I hadn't got anything done.

Last night I tried and tried to go to sleep but I found myself exhausted and yet somehow awake. Which pretty much never happens to me...after some troubleshooting I figured maybe the iced coffee I drank around 9 had something to do with it?

Yesterday I cycled through accepting where I am in life and hating it. I felt unsettled and not at peace all day. When I told my "little sister" about how I felt she asked me a bigger question, "What does Jesus say?"

And it stopped me in my tracks.

Because I didn't have an answer.

Have I been quiet enough to hear? Have I actually listened?

I don't think so.

Last night when I couldn't sleep I pulled my old prayer journal off the shelf and cracked it open to this time last year. And I read entries from fall through Ash Wednesday.

I was surprised by what I found.

I had really really great days in Georgia. I knew that. But I also had really really hard times, that I had managed to forget. I had the months where I didn't know what was next for me, if I would be a missionary or not, and if I would, if that would involve another cross-country move. I had times where I felt alone. I had times where I was dissatisfied. I had times where I had a sinus infection during offsite.

And I had times of grace. I had times where I felt Jesus' love and focused on believing it. I saw myself feel content for the first time in my life. I had times when I enjoyed being single. I had encouraging words from my friends and from my spiritual director. And those things are still true.

So I know this too shall pass. I will have good days and I will have bad days. I will have times of grace and I'll have times when I realize I haven't stopped complaining enough to hear Jesus' voice. And hopefully when I look back, I'll see the good again and overlook the difficulties.


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

***disclaimer: as my 25th birthday and impending quarterlife crisis approach I'm afraid these dramatic posts will be finding their way to the interweb more often than I'd like to admit***

Homesick forever and always is what I think this blog is turning into.

Today I went to mass and instead of cracking open my Bible to pray I just let my heart cry "Please let me go home. I want to go home. Please."

I've been back for how long? 10 weeks? 12?

I still don't feel at home at a church here, in a home here, at school here, or at work here.

At the same time I don't know what my heart is longing for because the Georgia I left is not the same Georgia now. People have moved, people have changed, people have grown.

As I put in more and more hours at my jobby job I miss my old amazing job I used to complain about. There are ups and downs to every job, and being a missionary definitely had both. I hope one day I'll have a job again where I'm not dragging myself out of bed in the morning and counting down the minutes until a day off...

(although I remember my life as a missionary... I remember the showers and weddings and birthdays I missed. I remember the holidays I spent away, I remember the days I worked from 7a until midnight, and I'll never forget the nights I stopped in the chapel, exhausted, at peace with the fact I had done my best and had nothing left to give)

Nonetheless, I'm still finding myself between two worlds: my college friends who are all getting married and having kids, and my teammates/friends who are doing weird things with their lives, too (back in school, in seminary, missionary, and/or still not really settled as they'd like). Physically, I'm closer to my college friends. Life-wise, I'm closer to my Georgia friends.

All in all, I still don't feel at home.

Georgia on My Mind

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Jess's car.
Ms. Rachel
That one lady from mass I don't know her name.
Ms. Natalia (twice).
Uncle Mark.

This is a short short list of the people from Statesboro I think I've seen. Almost everyday I think I see someone from that sweet state.

Back to the Quiet.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

SOOO as I may or may not have mentioned I'm working now and I really love it.

I think work is good for us, although we're not meant to be working all the time.

Working in a fast-paced environment (our store just opened yesterday, so things be cray...in a good way) has pointed out to me something my more slow-moving environment lets me forget: I need quiet.

I've been better about not binging on Netflix this week! So proud of myself!

When I get in my car to/from work or even class, I've found myself more apt to turn off the radio.

When I get in the car after a long day, I can feel it in me: I need to pray.

 I also am juggling my work schedule and my school schedule... In a way more intensely than I did in college round 1. (Not mad about the lack of working 3-6a so far this round). It didn't go as well as I would've liked this week (we'll see what my exam scores say next week), but I have a better idea about my life and skedge now.

Working lets me talk to people and give them food and try to make them happy.

That's something I don't get hanging out in my room watching TV or surfing the webby web.

WELLLLL I guess I'll sign off. I get to sleep in until 9a tomorrow (SO THANKFUL-I've been making college round 1 mistakes thinking I'll get up at 6a to study... Lies).

I hope you get some quiet in your life. Or some human contact.

If anyone out there reads this.

That School Grind.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

This weekend my cousin got married.

This week my new jobby job started (Panda Express opened. I work for Panda and this is my own opinion--I love Panda.).

This week I had 2 biggy big exams.

Guess which I neglected...

I keep imagining speeches people give at the Oscars...I'd like to thank so and so for getting me this far...

We'll see how my exam goes tomorrow, but if it goes well, I'd like to dedicate it to my new study station, Pandora's Hip Hop Instrumental.

In other news, I am throwing in the study towel for the night and it's only 12:09a.

My freshman year I would study until 4a (crazy).

Bless my little heart.

What do single people blog about??

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Somehow I got wrapped up in all these blogs over the summer.

I love reading them. I loved reading birth story upon birth story (which helped me make the leap for college round 2: Kate hopefully becomes a nurse). Most of them involve women documenting their lives. Which means documenting their parenting adventures.

But I don't really know what single people blog about.

Life in community college with a part-time job is not the most thrilling subject, and I'm not sure where to look for writing inspo. But for whatever reason, I'm drawn to write and I think of topics everyday that I haven't taken the time to nail down (Slovakia and Slovakia).

I figure writing something is better than writing nothing.

So here was the pathetic adventure of my day.

I just found out I could screenshot on my ghetto phone...

I love love having long hair. I want it to grow and grow and grow until one day I am dramatically overwhelmed as I cannot seem to brush it. This was today. It probably didn't help that I curled and hairsprayed these luscious locks for a wedding yesterday.

I had to make a trip to the walmart for detangler. This is not the first time I've done this (although it is the first time with this long-hair go-round). The most embarrassing part is that, try though I might, I cannot find any adult versions of detangler. I was hopeful to find something by a more elegant name and a bigger price tag (pride goeth before a fall, etc etc). Instead I ended up with strawberry-scented kids' detangler.

And my hair was happy again.

I'm not sure if this means my long hair is on its way out? I hope not...but I'm not sure that I'm responsible enough to handle it. #pathetic.

Daddy's Girl.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

My Dad's birthday was on Thursday (September 11). It's always an interesting balance of "our nation is mourning a tragedy, but I'm still happy it's my dad's birthday."

This summer I saw Ground Zero, or the September 11 Memorial, or whatever it is called. I was brought to tears, especially as I read names of all those first responders and the name of a woman (I don't remember her name) listed with her unborn child.

Nonetheless, I am so happy my dad had his birthday!

Both my parents lost their dads way too soon. My mom's dad passed when she was about 12, and my dad's dad passed before my dad was born (unborn child status). As an extremely sentimental person, I've always been sad I don't know my grandfathers (except through our family), and I have been thankful to have so much time with my parents. Also, I'm thankful for my "step-grandpas" who were the only grandpas I knew growing up, and who didn't treat us any differently because of that.

ANYWAY. Jim's birthday. What a guy! Because of Jim, I am a thinker. Whenever I tell my dad some new exciting information I've learned (aka, everything in the movie documentary Blackfish), he always asks me where the info is from or why it is portrayed it is. Because of Jim, I ask questions. Some of my favorite memories of my dad were our times spent grocery shopping when I was little (even though it took for-ev-er because he knew everyone working). Ask my former roommates, grocery shopping is still one of my love languages. I know how to play basketball because of my dad. When I was 8 years old, I attended Jim's college graduation. How amazing! Now he's back for round 2 and set to graduate in May! It looks like I'm following in his footsteps.

I could go on and on, but I won't.

All I know is that growing up has taught me that parenting must be wayyy harder than it looks.

And I think I turned out okay.

So good job, Mom and Dad!

Happy Birthday, Dad! I love you forever.

The Problem with Sleeping Eleven Hours.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Last night I slept for eleven hours.

I've been trying and trying to get myself into more of a routine and to live a more-ordered life. First on that list means getting up early and getting my day started. Also on the list is to avoid bumming around at my parents hours watching tv for hours, napping in between classes, and watching too much tv before bed.

Last night I got to bed later than I wanted.

This morning I made an impulse decision not to get up at 7:30a and slept alllll the way until 11. I lost like 4 hours of my life, and the rest of my day suffered. I wasn't as active as usual. I ate junk food.

Now it's 11p and my poor body is like "We've only been up for 12 hours...what's our next adventure? Feed us more junk food!!!" (I guess I imagine all the cells in my body speaking in unison, hence, plural).

Having night class Wednesdays and 8am on Thursdays was not my best planning move...Wednesday nights I'm wound up from class and Thursday mornings I don't want to wake up.

No rest for the wicked.

And that is the problem with sleeping eleven hours.

College Reunion

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Anticipating that this was going to be my last free weekend in a while, I texted one of my college besties and invited myself over for the weekend. I hadn't see her since Christmas. And I hadn't seen her boyfriend in...a year??  I don't know. I've been out of the loop!

On the way I stopped in Columbia and had lunch with a dear friend and FOCUS Missionary, Levi! It's always a blessing to catch up. I don't think I had seen him in a year since I was sick for Student Leadership Summit this year.

Saturday I had a special surprise. Anna and Jon arranged for our friends Dominic and Alyson to come to town and bring their sweet baby girl I was aching to meet. It was the first time the four of us college friends were together in almost three years.

I think C and I are besties...so great to finally meet this pretty little lady.

Of course, I was also excited to see Katie and hear about her new jobby job and grownup life. I was thankful that all of us were able to talk about our lives now and not revert to talking about memories from college the whole time. I saw that I have grown a lot in the couple years that I have been away, but I really like who I am now.

The band is back together!

I felt like I talked about Georgia the whole time, and as I explained my roommates and my team to Anna, I realized how close I was to them and how much I considered them my family (I know, we're weird). Thinking about the end-of-the-day chats, post-meeting-new-people updates, and family rosaries that I'm no longer a part of made me realize that yes, this is actually a big transition in my life. And it's okay that it is a hard transition. I'm not being ridiculous-things are very different in my life, and it's okay to miss those beautiful things.

I'm thankful for friends, old and new, and to be plugged back in!

My Love-Hate Relationship with Busy.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

I'm trying not to be busy.

In high school if you looked at my planner, you'd see obligation upon obligation. School, yearbook, nannying, community theatre, high school theatre, and whatever else I could squeeze in it. I loved being busy.

College looked mostly the same, but I tried to see what was really important to me and tried to avoid things just because they "looked good on a resume." Realizing I had put my identity in the life of busy, I desired to slow down. Of course, I still liked my schedule more full than empty.

When I became a missionary and went through 5 rigorous weeks of training (imagine class days like high school + fundraising 100% of your salary + adjusting to graduating + getting ready to move across the country...while meeting the most amazing people. ever.), I remember hearing a talk about being busy. The speaker told us that when people ask how she is doing, she tries not to say "busy." Busy, she explained, means that people feel like we don't have time for them. Busy means that if there is something going on in their lives, they're probably not going to say anything.

I don't think I've been nearly successful enough with not being busy.

And as I've found my schedule depressingly clear, I have desired for busy.

But I think I've desired for more than busy. I've wanted meaningful relationships and meaningful work. And those are two good things. I don't think those are what really defines busy (sorry for the metaethics up in here).

I am wanting an ordered life-one that doesn't involve constant Netflix streaming-and I don't think busy is the answer, as good as a packed schedule sometimes makes me feel. I am wanting to be available to those around me, and of course, to God and what He has on my daily agenda.

And I don't think that's what busy will give me.

I've Come a Long Way.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Today in my lab I looked at a sheep's brain.

When I was in the sixth grade, we were supposed to dissect a chicken wing. My teacher just bought some chicken wings from the grocery store, and in science class we dissected them and played with their tendons and stuff.

And by we, I mean NOT me.

Because I was grossed out and I think I also tried to find some moral dilemma in the whole thing (#KatetheDramaQueen).

In college (round 1), we had one morning we could go to the gross anatomy lab and see a cadaver's vocal folds or throat or something.

I conveniently felt sick that morning (Our professor didn't make it mandatory).

Today I looked at a sheep's brain.

I've come a long way.

You mean I can't wear sandals all year?

Monday, August 25, 2014

Today I had to find some flats at the Walmart.

Because apparently my wardrobe is NOT lab-friendly (I'm actually not too mad about it).

My Southern-missionary wardrobe is comprised mainly of sandals, as far as the shoe department is concerned. Black strappy dress sandals, brown dress sandals, a pair of Birks, a pair of Chacos, a pair of Tevas...I also have a pair of heels and a pair of tennis shoes (for hitting up the gym with students).

In the "winter"? In Florida I wore sandals. Or some Toms. In Georgia I got to wear boots. Or Toms. Which I wore out, so they are gone.

I had a pair of old tennis shoes...they were the only shoes I took to Slovakia this summer. After 3 weeks of wearing only tennis shoes, my toes were so happy to be free in sandals (and the tennis shoes were happy to hit the dumpster).

For lab I needed closed-toe shoes...and I just can't rock the soccer-mom-tennis-shoe look yet. As much as I'd like some, Toms aren't especially budget-friendly so knock-offs from the Walmart it is!

God is teaching me humility.

My Life as a Series of Netflix Documentaries.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Lately my biggest dilemma has been what to watch on Netflix.

I am blessed. What a great, simple dilemma to have!

I found new favorites this year...

From "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" to the 30 for 30 "The Price of Gold" to my perhaps all-time favorite, "Blackfish", the possibilities are endless.

What to watch?

And yet it's actually kind of a problem.

My desire to always make the "best" choice when scanning Netflix sometimes leads me to not making a choice...for too long! So half an hour later, I'm finally ready to watch something...when really  I should be in bed or better spending my time somewhere else.

The biggest thing I've noticed since being home is that I have been watching a lot of TV and not reading very much. On campus I felt like I never watched TV because I never had time to, so I savored the moments I did (it's the little things in life, really). Now I feel like all I do is watch TV.

So I think I'm instituting a no-TV on Sundays so I can truly rest and spend some time remembering who I am.

Because my life should be more than a series of Netflix documentaries.

I've Become THAT Person in Your Class.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

After I transferred schools, I ended up having a lot of non-traditional students in my major-specific classes. And I loved it! Those women were so sweet and reminded me of my mom when I was far from home. They were kind and encouraging, and I admired them for going to school while trying to raise their kids well. They were juggling schedules in ways I could never imagine. And while I'm sure it was hard on them and their families, they knew it was a short-term sacrifice that would help the family long-term.

And then sometimes I would have a non-traditional student or two in my class who was clueless about anything technology related.


I had to hold off on turning in a paper in my lab today because I DIDN'T KNOW MY EMAIL ADDRESS.

I went to the library on campus, and I had to write down my login and password because I can't remember it. And then in my class I looked at my little sheet and thought, "Well, maybe my login is my email...but I'm not sure..."

It was. I've become that person.


I'm also in denial that I'm a student because today I used my old kombucha jar to make cold brew coffee and I made imitation Starbucks syrup.


Also today I remembered winter is a thing here and I almost cried.

The End.

To Give You a Future and a Hope

Sunday, August 10, 2014

One week ago I was frantically scrambling around my apartment.

As a result of living in 5 different states in the past 6 years and not living in the same apartment for more than 9 months at a time, I've become too familiar with moving. I've become much too familiar with moving by myself. Sure I have the occasional friend pop in and help with a couple boxes. When I got to Statesboro I had a great crew bring up all the stuff out of my car in under 3 trips. It was beautiful.

So when my family volunteered to come down to Statesboro and help me pack and move I graciously accepted. I didn't realize how overwhelmed I was until I didn't know how to let my mom help me pack up my room. And then the next morning I realized I was so used to being by myself that I thought, "Okay, we'll go to 8am mass and then pack the car. We'll be done by 10." I completely forgot that my parents and brothers would want breakfast.

Which led to us my dad and brothers packing the car as 10:30a mass let out. Not a detail I thought much about, but since my apartment was above the parish office and my car was in the crowded parking lot... I quickly realized that the whole church would be watching all my belongings get piled into my car while I ran around in athletic shorts and everyone walked out of church in Sunday mass clothes. Not my finest moment.

When my car was packed and my parents drove off, I saw my empty empty room. I went downstairs into the chapel I prayed in everyday I lived in Georgia. I thanked Jesus for a great year. And I cried. I left the chapel and I questioned, as I often do.

I wondered. I felt my angsty, teenage self come out. I thought, "I have finally found a place that feels like home, and I'm leaving. I love the people here, and I'm leaving. I want to live here. Why am I leaving? Why am I leaving my friends? Why am I leaving the culture I love and want to be a part of? Why does everything have to be hard? Why do I always have to move?"

And tempted as I was to become angry and bitter with God, I was given a grace. I answered my own doubts and insecurities. I prayed. "God, your ways are not my ways. I know you have a plan. The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord."

He has given me a future and a hope. Do things make sense? No. But I'm choosing to trust in His promises.