Monday, August 20, 2012

thoughts from a plane (MM#27)

about a week ago I flew from TLH to DC and jotted down some thoughts to pass the time.  
i type them here, on this mindful monday, to productively reflect and rebuild...

When I return to Tallahassee in a few short days, I will be one. month. away. from my departure to the UK. Ahhh!

In recent weeks/months, it's seemed that not a day passes that I don't have to relay to someone my future plans and aspirations. And while the prospects are exciting, I admit I've sensed an internal twinge of uncertainty/anxiety/fear for what I'm getting myself into...

>>   I bought several books off the "recommended reading" list for my course ages ago, but I have yet to crack one open.*
      >>   I am thoroughly interested in Medical Anthropology, but have never once studied it, and have certainly never written a 10,000-word paper, let alone three in a mere 9 months.
            >>   I applied for my student visa, but haven't received it from the border agency yet.º
                    >>   I have housing, and even a plane ticket, but not the slightest clue of what to pack in those 2-suitcases -of-50-pounds-or-less to sustain me for a year in a country whose weather I've never experienced. 

Small fears, maybe—certainly not insurmountable—but ever-present nonetheless.

                                                  Pinned Image

Luckily, I've found some relief in the past week or so through reconnections, reminders, rediscoveries, and realizations...

When I scheduled my life with a semester off after undergrad, I pictured using that time to relax, to delve into the things that I never had time for before, to explore "me." 

In reality, the only thing that happened was the formation of a cleft 
between where I am and where I want to be.

Now, don't get me wrong: I don't mean to imply that I don't enjoy and appreciate where I am.  ~That's not the case at all.~  I am blessed to be back at home, surrounded by people who love and care for me everyday, with a job, and able to venture for a week to our nation's capital and beyond. No, what I mean to say is that in this time off from school and schedules, all I've really done is lost—not found—myself. 
Turns out, all those things that made me "too busy to do the things I want" were 
actually the things that make me ME. [And it's only taken 8 months to figure that out...]

So what was it in the past few days that made this sink in? 
  1. I've been reconnected with some other Rhodes finalists also heading to Oxford, reminding me of all that I've accomplished that has prepared me for this upcoming adventure. 
  2. I've also rediscovered running (the Olympics might have helped) and have decided to try out for Oxford's squad. It's amazing what a little inspiration can do for an idle body and mind.ª
  3. I've encountered people over the last few days who have reinvigorated my interest in actually doing something productive with my life-- family friends working to improve the health of schoolchildren; traveling businessmen discussing upcoming research presentation topics; Oxford students getting word out about campus opportunities; friends starting med school, or traveling abroad to teach/volunteer; and siblings beginning educational journeys of their own, and doing it with confidence and class.
Those mentioned in numbers 1 and 3 above are the people in my world. They are innocently living their busy lives, yet they are guilty of infecting me with the itch to get back into the classroom and into the world. Sitting here with what is hopefully the end of a two-week fight with poison ivy (yuck), I can assure you that "itches"are not something I like to let settle in.  So here's to finding a cure!
Be Strong and Courageous
via Etsy
If you've read this entire post, you are either (a) genuinely interested in my ramblings well-being; (b) incredibly bored; (c) devoted to finishing a task once started; or (d) all of the above. Whatever your answer, be sure to leave a comment, below, if you've ever found reassurance through others living out their lives around you. If that doesn't apply to you, look around! People are out there doing some amazing things, and you are fully capable of joining them.


* Outdated statement! I am now into chapter 2 of one of 'em. Boo yah!
º Also outdated! Just got my visa in the mail! Double boo yah!
ª It's also amazing what a vacation can do to obliterate that inspiration. I guess I'll be starting from square one when I return to Tally...


  1. As I read your new entry I was reminded of this Psalm that was once read to me and thought it was fitting for you and God's plan for you.
    Psalm 139
    13. For You formed my inward parts;
    You covered me in my mother’s womb.
    14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;[b]
    13 Marvelous are Your works,
    And that my soul knows very well.
    15 My frame was not hidden from You,
    When I was made in secret,
    And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
    16 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
    And in Your book they all were written,
    The days fashioned for me,
    When as yet there were none of them.

    Enjoy the journey Maria as you add to the already incredible chapters in your life. You truely are wonderfully made. Love, M~

  2. I read your blog because (a) I always read your blogs and (b) I'd rather read your blogs than check my email.

    SO, first of all, thanks for rambling/reflecting--especially for writing this: "Turns out, all those things that made me 'too busy to do the things I want' were actually the things that make me ME."

    TOO TRUE. School starts at Stetson this Thursday and, even though classes haven't started... meetings, bonner volunteer work, more meetings, TA stuff, club meetings, emails, emails, and more emails all has already begun (which makes me really look forward to adding homework to the list! yay..) Thanks for reminding me that being busy is part of being me and, at the same time, to remember Joshua 1:9.

    Sending lots of love and prayers for you and for your many adventures ahead. I know you'll do awesome because that is just how you do things :)Who knows, maybe I'll see you this upcoming spring if I study abroad... :)