Two years ago today I was flying across the Atlantic on my way to Ireland – the first day of the World Race. I remember what I wore – green capris and a gray tank top. I remember sitting next to that old, inebriated man who hit on me. I remember switching seats and sitting next to a large, European lady who gave me her packaged airplane brownie. I think I might’ve asked her for it.
Remembering myself on this day stirs my stomach with emotion. I don’t know exactly what it is I feel. Nostalgia? Maybe. Maybe not. Back then, I didn’t know how the story would unfold. Now I know. I know the high highs, the low lows and all the in betweens that have made up the last two years. I wish I could go back and protect myself from the low times. But I guess that’s what has made me stronger…or so they say.
I have regrets. Sure, I learned from them, but that doesn’t mean I wish things had happened the way they did. I will always regret when the consequence of my sin hurts another person. I will always regret when I make choices that cheapen myself, cheapen God.
I’m okay with admitting regret. The sense of loss helps me change.
May 12, 2011:
The end of all things – my last night in Nicaragua. I’m completely packed. All I have to do is wake up, put on pants, get in a van, get on an airplane and then I’m back in the States. Just like that.
This is where I am now – on a bottom bunk, listening to Bon Iver, surrounded by my 8 sisters.
So many of the girls are distracted with the concept of home – we’re in another country! Why wish it away? But then I remember when I stared at a wall in Darjeeling for 45 minutes – I was lost in the fantasy I created in my head. I WAS IN DARJEELING! Why didn’t I enjoy it more?
I have regrets. I regret wishing my life away at times. I regret taking people for granted – why do I do this? I am so absorbed with myself – I care more about my alone time, my play time, my wants and needs and desires than I do about the people around me. I don’t even notice them sometimes (a lot of the time.) The season ends and I’m left wondering what could have been if I gave more of myself. If I asked more questions, listened more, encouraged more. I should have done more for Alisa. For the girls. Lynne and Glenn. Elvis and Carlos. Terry and Lydia. Everyone.
I don’t want it to take saying goodbye for me to realize how valuable someone is.
I don’t want to realize how special a place is only after I’ve left.
I don’t want to live life half-heartedly – it leaves too much room for regret.
My music stopped playing – it’s raining outside. This is the kind of stuff I miss out on when my ears are plugged. I miss the sound of rain at night. It matches my mood right now – it always seems to.
Wow – it’s almost been an hour. I wrote so little and have so much more to say. But I think I’m going to try and sleep. Goodnight, Nicaragua. Thanks for the rain.
That was three months ago.
Two months ago today I moved to Georgia. Since then it’s been a whirlwind of getting settled in my apartment, bonding with my roommate, building relationships with those around me and allowing God to use me in my gifts and talents.
I’ve said it before and I’m saying it again: I’m happy. I’m happy with where my life has taken me and I’m hopeful for where it will continue to take me. I’m learning from my regrets, I think. I hope.
Two years ago I was on a plane; today I sit in an office. I didn’t know what was in store back then – I hardly know what is in store now.
And so it goes.