lost in my mind.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Mama once told me, you're already home when you feel loved. 
I am lost in my mind, I get lost in my mind.

It seems as though every new season leads me to get lost in my mind, time and time again. 
The recent move to Azusa has been the same. 

The four long hours I drove in my silver corolla to my new home, in a new city, around new people, in an unfamiliar place gave me plenty of thinking time on the road. There was a monumental feeling of fear, anxiety, excitement, anticipation, and peace, somehow broken and mixed together in a melting pot of emotions. It was like this was the moment that I had been waiting for since I graduated, since I received my acceptance letters for graduate school, since I completed applications, since I made the decision to pursue student affairs as a vocation. And when I thought about this both as a finish line, and yet also a starting line, the fear and anxiety seemed to slip away. 

The two weeks I spent at home before moving to Azusa had me lost in my mind. Thoughts on what my new life would look like, who my new friends would be, what my new job would be like, anything and everything seemed to swallow me whole as I lay in bed at night, counting down the number of times I would fall asleep in my old bed next to a wall of twinkle lights. And then it came, and went, just like that. One night I was sleeping next to my life in boxes and duffel bags, the next, I was falling asleep in a new room, next to a new workspace and another twin bed, empty, awaiting the arrival of my roommate in a few weeks. 

Life is full of new seasons, some which feel like they last forever, and some which slip through the cracks without us taking notice. I am trying to breathe slowly, and move into this new season deliberately, knowing that transitions can be uncomfortable at times, but the uncomfortable is the inevitable that comes with making a new house a home.

But if you are already home when you feel loved, then I am home. 

From the beautiful outpouring of friends as I left Santa Barbara, unsure of when I would return next, to the open arms and welcoming spirit of my new co-workers in the office, a home-baked brownie and glass of fresh-squeezed vegetable juice from my new landlord, and the few folks from my cohort who I've connected with in the area, I feel as though I am home.

This past Sunday I was surprised with a ticket to see a few of my favorite musicians at the Hollywood Bowl with a new friend. As we listened to the sweet sounds of Iron and Wine, the Head and the Heart, and Glen Hansard, I felt the familiar warm feeling of "home" set in. Feeling comfortable, at ease, even excited for the upcoming weeks, as the bowl erupted with music and emotion, was more than I could have ever imagined. It was truly a night I won't forget anytime soon.

And as we drove back to Azusa, the top down in the car, with a bright full moon lighting the highway, and the wind roaring past us, I stared up into the night sky. A sky I've gazed up at far too many times before, whether in the apple orchard at Calvin Crest, on the beach in Santa Barbara, walking across the bridge to VK at Westmont, or in my own backyard. A constant. The dark sky, pitted with tiny, twinkling, stars, and a moon, whether waxing, or waning, or full and incredibly stunning as it was that night, it is a mark of stability. 

So many things are changing, yet so much is still the same. 

And as I continue building my bridge into this next season of my life, laying brick by brick, I find myself balancing the unfamiliar and the familiar once again.

I know I will get lost in my mind once again, especially with these next busy weeks as our office is filled with new interns and campus welcomes all the new students for orientation, as I begin my graduate courses and settle in somewhat of a new routine, and the semester begins. Life will become busy again, with homework and projects, reading and working, fixing dinners to pack for class and biking to get groceries down the street, spending time with sweet friends and sunday adventures with new ones, staying in touch with my family back at Westmont, and building my family here.

But I know that regardless of where I am, or what I'm doing, I'll always be able to look up into that dark sky and remember the stability that rests behind the many seasons of life I have gone through and will continue to. 

Here's to another new season.

Respectfully submitted,