lessons from the road

This post is long overdue.

Spending two weeks living out of a bag will teach you something about yourself; spending two weeks living out of a bag in the company of deep friendships from different seasons of life will teach you about yourself and who you want to become. 

These are excerpts from my journal during that trip…

I’ve been thinking lately how my defenses may have changed shape, but they are still the same at the core: I run.

It is no coincidence that I’m leaving Seattle less than 48 hours after finishing my classes, even if it is just for a trip and not moving away. I still run away from endings. Hindsight being what it is (20/20), I wish I would have waited a week, or even until May, to have this East Coast adventure. I wish I would have given myself time to be in Seattle with my peers, and allowed myself to mourn the ending and to celebrate the accomplishment of finishing graduate school, but instead I left. I rushed through my Day After to get to my Departure Day.

Maybe it’s because my imagination cannot hold what life will be like in this city without school. I graduated from high school, then my mother and I moved a month later; graduated from college, and left town to move back home; laid off from my job, so I moved across the country a couple of months later. Why would I stay in Seattle after graduate school? It seems I associate endings with leaving, so what does it mean to stay?

What does it mean to finish, but not leave?

My hope is that it means breathing deep, anchoring myself in community, and growing roots without forgetting how to fly….

During the past 4 years, I have been deconstructed and loved into life like I have never known before; I have been shaped and challenged into further growth by my school, my therapist, my friends, and my family in ways that cannot be described, but I feel them in my bones. I have learned how to love myself, how to love others, and how to receive love from others.  I have found breath and life, darkness and light, and through it all have come to know God is such a way that words escape me.

Maybe it’s time to learn how to be home in the midst of transition. Maybe this is the phase of life where I learn to stay instead of leave, where I choose to be in it (whatever ‘it’ may be) rather than running towards a new place, a new ‘me.’ Maybe, just maybe, this time I will turn my face to the rainy city I love and finally listen when it says, ‘Welcome home, Courtney.'”

May we all know the power of being home.

 

Selah, my friends. Peace be with you.

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