Oh, hey. It’s been a minute. What it basically comes down to is that I’m much more motivated to write on here when I am back in school and procrastinating my reading. Whaaaat? Actually my reading is done right now. Which is weird. Which leads me into update NUMERO UNO.
1. I finally feel like I’ve gotten into a rhythm with college. I’m ENJOYING it. I know. Just in time to be DONE. Hahah, but isn’t that just how it goes? In all honesty, it’s just a really good feeling to have my head above water, feel capable, and have the end in sight. School has been freaky hard for me. (And I do know it’s hard for everyone in different ways. It’s a rare breed that just loves EVERY aspect of school.)
And now that it’s so close to being over, I am feeling such a sense of accomplishment and gratitude that this was so hard and that I persisted! It would not have meant so much to me if I had not struggled SO badly with it at some points. I know I sound just like every Hallmark card out there. Or like this guy:
There are still a lot of big hurdles in the home stretch, but there is also the sense of, I’ve come this far and every final I thought I’d bomb, every class I thought was too far over my head, every project I thought I couldn’t juggle etc., I DID. So whatever comes next, I can do too. There is something so worthwhile and empowering in struggling and PERSISTING and discovering your strength.
(Now I just want someone to make me repeat this to myself over and over before I languish through another hard something for five years, only to learn to love it and find confidence in the very last few months of it. :/ WHOOPS.)
2. Since I am finally friends with college, I feel like I am coming back out of a fog – one where I’m no longer in survival mode and can actually enjoy things. (I wish I could go back and time and smack myself in the forehead, like, BOOP! Shoulda had a V8, but like, shoulda had better coping skills! But you know. You live and you learn.) I have a genuine thirst to learn lately. I’m really enjoying books and podcasts of all different kinds, and even enjoying the research articles I’m reading for a climate change class or the dry. I had the confidence to raise my hand and respond to a guest-lecturing scientist when he asked someone to explain a concept from the reading. That was MONUMENTAL for me. I always feel dumb and avoid raising my hand because I’m scared I don’t get it. But this time I was A) pretty sure I got it and B) totally okay if I didn’t. Both were a big deal.
3. On the same vein of coming out of a stress fog, I am feeling way more like myself socially again. Like it’s not a choose-one situation between doing school and working and having friends. You’re like *eye roll* that’s groundbreaking! But after the last year or so of my life, for me, it is. And I am so grateful for that, because I didn’t realize how much I was isolating myself and how much that has been adding to my stress. When you’re inside of stress, it’s so easy to tell yourself you don’t know how to reach out, or it’s not worth the effort or the energy, and some days, that’s totally true, and okay. But what I’ve rediscovered since I formally resigned as mayor of Stresstown, is that that effort and energy generally returns to you when you spend time to the right people, and you can walk away feeling more energized and more capable. People need people. Whether you’re an introvert or extrovert. Whether you see them once a year, or once a week. Friends is friends, y’all. And I really love mine.
(It helps that a lot of them have really darling babies, because come on. That’s an automatic feel-good hangout. See Mama McCall below juggling a drumstick and her baby for evidence).
4. This month, we moved out of our Orem apartment since our lease was up and our house is projected to be done in the next few months. Moving out was a very bittersweet and strange experience. It’s the third place we’ve lived together, but we were there for a year and a half, which is the longest I’ve ever lived ANYWHERE since graduating high school and leaving home. We felt completely right about moving out and staying with family, but to leave that place and those rooms that were solidly ours for so long was sad.
We are living in my parents basement right now while our home is finished. Perks of that include – free Lean Pockets and whole lot more family time. I also LOVE being back north. There is something about your hometown that just makes your heart settle into safety and familiarity. And while the canyons in Utah County were spectacular and I love them, there is something about my yellow-grass, rocky, at-home mountains that makes me feel like me. We go hiking a few times a week and it’s just such comfort every time to be held again by the hills and canyons that held me for so many years of my life. These mountains mean the world to me.
5. Pretty random, but lately I’ve realized the dream of my heart is to just to have a little family, rent out Airbnbs, and retire somewhere rural and have animals to tend. I blame it all on my new goat BFF and this fuzzy AF bunny named MEATBALL we met at my favorite (and maybe only existing) gas station petting zoo on a recent hiking excursion/road trip.
We also met the sweetest autistic man there who was so knowledgable about all the animals, and his enthusiasm was so infectious that now I probably have no choice but to own fifty goats, a camel, some zonkeys (a Zebra+donkey hybrid) bunnies, chickens, and definitely a horse to achieve the same kind of JOY.