Home is…

20th of June 2016.
I have been home for 3 weeks now and it has been quite the ride.
Writing means processing for me and it always pulls me forward and helps me close something, but since the end of interns I haven’t felt quite ready to write and tie up my loose ends. Going from  being with about 30 people all the time to being by yourself in an otherwise empty apartment with nothing to do is quite a big change. And while I was coming home and being here,there were 3 major things going through my mind.

 

  1. I graduated interns
    This one is a huge testimony to Gods goodness. Two years ago I was praying that God would reveal to me what to do after grad. I told Him that I wanted to dedicate a year of my life to solely Him, to grow in my understanding of who He is and what I believed in, who I was and what I wanted to do with that for the rest of my days. And so two years ago I saw a poster at a park talking about an open air movie night at a church in Maple Ridge and I picked up a flyer, thinking it would be a fun thing to do with my canadian girl-friends. I went on the website to look up the exact what, where and when and saw that they had a youthgroup that didn’t happen during the same time as my own. For two weeks I felt drawn to go to that youthgroup before I decided to go on the last Wednesday before my departure. I remember so clearly sitting in the living room of Marie and Andrews house, looking at the pouring rain outside and the text messages of my friends saying they couldn’t make it on such short notice and deciding to go. It was a decision to follow that gut feeling and I knew I was stepping out in faith, having no idea why I wanted to go or what was expecting me on the other end of this. And for the twenty minutes I walked through the rain I kept asking myself and God what I was doing but it was like He was whipering to me to keep going, to trust that He had something there for me. Well, as soon as I stepped inside the CLA Maple Ridge campus I saw Sophia, a girl I had gone to Highschool in Maple Ridge with, but kind of lost touch with after my departure. She introduced me to a couple of people and I sat next to a few of them during the service. And what can I say, I loved it. I loved the worship, the sermon spoke right to me and I felt so comfortable and almost … at home. And I remember standing in the auditorium and thinking “I could see myself here” As the night progressed everyone I talked to said something along the lines of “Have you heard about our internship program? You should do it”. Now I know we all say that very casually to a lot of people, however I do believe there’s something to it. And for me, in that moment, it was the answer to why God had me walk through the rain for twenty minutes. When I got home I went on the website, looked up the program and I was drawn to it like a moth to a flame. I liked this church. So I took out my diary and I made a financial plan.
    When I came home, that’s what I showed my parents and they were quite impressed.
    Then I went to a new church here for the first time and the Pastor, my Pastor, came up to me and said: “I don’t know you, but I feel like God is telling me that you have a school in mind that you are thinking of going to and God is saying ‘do it’. He’s all for it and Jesus will be there with you. What’s your  name?” And that was it.
    Decision made.
    Well, I wish it would’ve been that easy, because this is just how I decided to go.
    There was a lot of praying and asking God is He was sure and me saying I wanted to go to Australia instead before I was fully committed. And even after that my trust in God was challenged for a whole year with obstacle after obstacle and me clinging on Gods truth for dear life.
    And when I walked that stage and got to hug my Emily Zylla and stand amongst the people who became my family these past nine months, I couldn’t help but feel all happy and special and I was just so in awe of how good God is. All the moments sobbing on the floor were so worth it, because He truly does know better and He always knows why.
    People down here think I'm crazy, but I don't care. Trials and tribulations, I've had my share. There ain't nothing gonna stop me now, 'Cause I'm almost there.:
    Singing this song helped me through when it seemed too hard.
    It may seem weird, but I could identify with Tiana as people in the movie thought she was crazy for dreaming this big dream and that she would never reach it, but she knew and just kept going until she eventually did.
    So with every breakthrough that’s what I sang.
    And with every obstacle, that’s what I reminded myself of.
    It’s so special to look back on those two years and see everything God has done.
    It never fails to put a smile on my face.
  2. Now to something a bit shorter:
    I came home.
    And it took a lot of pulling myself together to not fall apart to be honest.
    Before I left for interns last September I reached a point, after everything was worked out and done, where I didn’t want to go anymore, simply because life was just too good and figured out at this point and I was scared to loose it.
    But I went and fought and it was well worth it for so many reasons.
    And while it is amazing to return and reunite, it’s not easy.
    Ask anyone who’s done it and had a good time, coming home is hard.
    And that is okay.
    One thing I know now that I didn’t know the first time is that no one can tell you how to feel, there is no should in feelings. I’m still learning that, but coming home this time, I definitely decided to walk that out.
    It is okay to be sad that something great is over.
    It is okay to feel a little lost and disoriented.
    And it’s okay to take time to settle back in.
    You worked and fought to make that foreign place your home and then you had to leave it and that sucks.
    That doesn’t make you a bad person or ungrateful for your home.
    It simply makes you a person.
    So let me give you permission to not unpack until you feel ready to be fully home.
    To cry a little or a lot and to do whatever you need to do to figure yourself out again.
    What helped me is (of course) Jesus.
    And getting a job.
    Getting up and doing something productive again feels so good.
    And while my neck, back and feet hurt at the end of a nine hour shift, it’s a good kind of pain. Like being sore after working out after a long time.
    You can take control of your life and sometimes I forget that.
    So you pick up the things you don’t like and change them.
    There ya go.
  3. What is my lifestyle?
    Over the last 4 years I have spent 2 in Canada.
    Not really, but pretty much.
    And as I packed up a whole room (again) and it felt like packing up my whole life (again) to come back home and feel like returning to someone I am not anymore (again) I felt a bit, I don’t know, exhausted?
    And thinking about doing it again let’s me long for settling down and knowing I will be in one place for at least 3 or better 5 years, while thinking about laying down roots let’s me long for exploring and adventuring the world.
    Typical young adult problem.
    So no, I don’t now yet.
    That’s why here, at point number 3, there’s not much to say.
    I’m still figuring it all out and in a way, I’m loving it.
    gilmore girls <3:

    Five years.Cool. Ive got about the next two and half years planned and then there's just darkness and possibly some dragons. (What I'm thinking when people talk about their life's goals and other future plans) | Gilmore Girls:
    So just like my homegirl Rory Gilmore, who accompanied me during hard and sucky days these past 9 months, I’m somewhere in between dragons in the darkness and embracing the uncertainty.

    So that’s me.
    In the last two years I went from a Disney Princess to a small town star to accompany me and so far I’ve figured out that no one has it all figured out.

    Paula

 

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