Week 12: Learning to Live Now

Dear Anticipation,

My head has been in the clouds. Tomorrows blur my todays into silence. It’s Thursday, but you have my heart chasing Friday when I will find myself in Ireland. Twelve days around from Dublin to Armagh, Croagh Patrick to Glendalough, and finally upwards in and around Belfast along the coast. I’ve stuffed you into my backpack—along with the clothes, snacks, and other such things 12 days requires—as a plea to again discover a place of wonder.

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This week was a pause. I had just one seminar, my last class here in Scotland. My others had finished, my final papers submitted. Here and there I glanced at my notes, studying for an exam I will take when I leave the Irish behind. I had my last Navigators bible study, with girls I have come to adore. But mostly, among these endings, I rested; I found I could hear the in and out of my breath, slow and steady. I read a book because I could. I got coffee with friends. I had conversations and well-wishing hugs that lit my insides and pulled me down from the clouds.

In this place of waiting, you threaten to consume me. You whisper about the hikes ahead, where I see great things after sweating through my last pair of clean socks. You sing songs of days post-exams, where I will be free at last. You push me to stare at the eventual good-byes, the parting of paths brought together, the realization that the rich cake I’ve been consuming is gone, and though my belly be full, my plate is empty. You pull me away from here, let me glimpse at a summer in Philly, reunited with friends, interning with underprivileged children. You’re a devil and I’m scraping you out from under my skin.

I saw lambs today. White, like fresh snow. Dark faces, fragile frames. New life sweeps in together, prances among brothers, head-butts into sisters.

 

I paused to watch, to remember among endings are beginnings, among tomorrows are todays waiting to be held once again.

 

Tomorrow I will be in Ireland. But today, today I am in Scotland.

Love Always,
Alexis

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