Friday, December 18, 2009

Life Lessons...Part 1

I've been learning a lot since being over here.

I know, you're thinking "Yeah right...look at all of those beach pictures, she just lounges around in the sun all day." I AM enjoying the beautiful surroundings I'm so very lucky to have at my doorstep this year...

But it's true I actually, really have been learning a lot.

I've realized how important it is for me to write. Even when I don't feel like it or don't think I have anything to write about. Because every time I sit down with a cup of coffee, my latest i-tunes purchase humming through my ipod and my journal I learn something.

One thing I've learned since being over here, away from home, with waaaay less distraction and waaaay more time to actually think is that I am constantly living in the future. I'm always thinking 10 steps ahead...never noticing what's right in front of me. I'm not going to lie, it's been a disheartening realization because I can recollect many moments, friendships, experiences I've unintentionally missed out on due to my own lack of understanding. Understanding that life happens whether or not we pay attention. People come and people go, opportunities come and opportunities go, seconds-minutes-hours-days all come and go. What we do with these things is up to us. For me, having spent the better part of the last year or so thinking about and wondering "what's next? where? how? when? what if?" has been exhausting to say the least. But more than that it's gotten me nowhere real fast & for the first time in my 25 years I'm looking back with regret. Regret that I missed out on fully grasping and experiencing a lot of really cool moments because I was stuck in the future.
I am, however, grateful for this lovely little slice of a life lesson. That I'm learning it at almost 25 instead of almost 50. One thing I've been getting asked more and more over here & by some friends back home is "What do you think you'll do when you get back?" I do have a few ideas of what I might like to do...BUT I now answer like this..."Well, I have 7 months left here. A lot can happen in the next 7 months to change any ideas I might have, so I'm just taking it one day at a time and we'll see what happens." :) It's been really freeing to let go of 'What will be' and focus on 'What is'.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Christmas in July...

...Or so it seems! It really is December and it really is 'that time of year....again'. Christmas. Normally for me'Tis the Season is full of all the winter wonderland, holidazzle goodness. You know how when you grow up with something or just experience it a certain way, you think that everyone else experiences it the same way. Like...Christmas. I mean, even back home there are plenty of places that celebrate a tropical Christmas, but growing up in Minnesota Christmas was always just as it is portrayed in the movies...feet of snow, sledding, wool socks, hot chocolate, snowmen. I'm telling you, it was the closest thing to 'Santa' and the North Pole. It NEVER crossed my mind, seriously (well, I KNEW it wasn't a snowglobe everywhere for Christmas...but) until this very year that on the other side of the world it might actually be SUMMER during Christmas. So my geography teacher was right...the Northern and Southern Hemispheres DO have opposite seasons. And a bunch of other differences. Crazy as it is, this year will be my very first Summer Christmas. BBQ's are in full swing and flip flops are everywhere. The school year is just finishing up and summer holiday is about to's weird. Because of all this it just doesn't actually feel like Christmas to me, which in turn is making it a lot less hard being away from home this year. Family means a lot to me & we're all very close so it's not easy missing out on seeing them for an entire year, especially during this time of the year. But, by having an out-of-sorts in every way Holiday, being away is just a wee bit easier! Enjoy the snow everyone...I'll be at the beach. :)

Wishing you all a very, very Merry Christmas...