In my journey through Australia, I feel like I’ve turned a page. The first two months were a time of discovery, learning, and just acclimating myself to a new place. I’m sure people looked at me as the tourist, the dumb American, and I’m positive I was ripped off. All a part of the journey.
This first season of the journey was summer. Everything had a glow to it, a sense of newness and warmth. It was like summer camp as a kid, figuring out who will be a good friend, HOW to be a good friend, where everything is located, if I fit in here or there and what I want to spend my time doing (study or go to the beach?, which usually ended up being a combo “why, i’ll study at the beach!). I pranced around like a tourist, photographing every moment until I retreated at night to my beach resort type home, decorated in pastels with pictures from the 1980’s. It was all quite romantic.
I had taken a two month holiday which meant that I didn’t work, think, or do much of anything but beach, run, and hang out. I realize that this was a needed and good time. I was able to enjoy myself, my friends, and this magnificent place that I’m in. But, well lets face it, I’m not very good at relaxing.
Now, fall has arrived. Fall is my favorite season, by far. It still has the playfulness of summer in it, hints of summer nights here and there, but there is a depth to it that summer just can’t compete with. Fall brings about change and reflection and a deep energy from the soul.
This season is good for me. I’ve begun to think about what an amazing opportunity it is that I have here. I’ve begun to reflect on who I am when all that I know is completely removed from me. I realize the survival techniques that I cling to when I am uncertain of the future and what I do to relieve mild panic attacks.
Fall brings about a familiarity, a routine. Routine is good for me. In fact, I love routine. I will never claim to have a routine here, I don’t know if that exists, but I am beginning to explore the deeper things of where I am. I’m beginning to explore myself, which is not an easy task. I’m realizing how connected everything is. There is no body, soul, and mind separate from each other, but rather they are all intricately connected, so when one is not right, they all suffer.
I’ve taken time to reflect on my journey so far, and I’ve come to this: I am blessed. I am blessed to have parents who were willing to risk sending their only daughter across the world. I am blessed to have connections to friends and family that wouldn’t have been possible even 3 years ago. I am blessed to be living among some of the most generous people in the world. And I am blessed to have a God who is constantly beside me, telling me “No worries” (he’s become Australian) when I get scared and encouraging to think outside of myself.
So, to leave you with this:
“Nothing is more practical than finding God, than falling in love in a quite absolute, final way. What you’re in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evening, how you will spend your weekends, what you read, whom you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.”