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The Hard & The Holy

“Please hear me, Girl: The world has enough women who know how to do their hair. It needs women who know how to do hard and holy things.”
– Ann Voskamp

Well–I love this quote.

Life right now is full of lessons (nothing out of the ordinary there, I suppose), but they all seem to be centered around the idea and–more challenging–the act of sacrifice.

It’s not particularly fun, but it’s the uphill climb to get to the summit. And I know my sacrifices are small in comparison to much of the world, but it’s still my journey uniquely, and right now I’m tired because it’s hard.

I try to remind myself as I make final preparations to leave one life season and style for another, that once I’m there, I’ll be able to appreciate and value it that much more–knowing the cost it took to get there.

Because I want to be a woman who knows more than how to do my hair.

So I’m embracing the sacrifice and discovering the increasing springs of strength to grow in my journey through the hard and holy things God has called me to do.

“Blessed are those whose strength is in you, in whose heart are the highways to Zion. As they go through the Valley of Baca they make it a place of springs; the early rain also covers it with pools. They go from strength to strength; each one appears before God in Zion.”
-Psalm 84:5-7 ESV

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I Quit!

areyoulivingyourdream

The past weeks have been full of so much that I won’t try to recap for the blog; I’ll just pick up with where the journey has brought me thus far. (Also, be on the lookout for my 10, TEN, month review at the start of July next week.)

When I decided last fall to embark on this journey, I didn’t have much foresight into what it would hold. I did expect to be able to accomplish all the “assignments” which I now realize was a tad overambitious. I knew I was definitely interested in traveling around the world, but honestly, that part of it didn’t feel so real. I told a select number of people about the plan, and I talked about it with confidence, mostly trying to convince myself that it would really happen. As time progressed, I think I’ve had every emotion under the sun about the trip.

And now, just yesterday, I gave my workplace my resignation notice so I guess it’s official!

I’m really not sure what else to say about that.

I’ve had so many different emotions about resigning and leaving Michigan over the past year, and it’s completely surreal that it’s happening now. It feels empowering to embark on this trip, but it also feels overwhelming and all consuming, like I’ve just plunged myself into the waves of the unknown and now I’m not really sure which way is up. I know I’ve made plenty of other decisions that have changed the course of my life, but this decision just felt so final. At one moment I had complete control, and the next I felt so … exposed. I certainly wasn’t expecting was to feel so emotionally raw and spent after resigning.

But it’s absolutely and completely wonderful, too. I’M LIVING MY DREAM!!!!

!!!

Can’t believe it.

In the coming weeks, I’m really going to try to get back to blogging. Now that the end is so near, I have a renewed energy to push myself to the finish line, and I hope to accomplish a decent amount of things that are still on my list for this project. I’ll also have a lot of tips and info I’ll share about round the world travel, as I’ve learned so much over this past year about that. I’m also considering keeping the blog alive as I travel, but it’s been so touch and go over these past few months I’m not sure if I will be able to blog consistently once the project is actually over.

In any case. In conclusion, this quote has been reassuring to me as I commit and begin. Go begin something today! And let me know about it in the comments, if you please. 🙂

GoethesFaust

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My WanderList

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Man. This is harder than I was expecting! So far I’ve read two books and am partially through a third one….

I’ve not listened to a single podcast, The Economist still hasn’t started arriving, and I’m not even thinking about countries or capitals of the world.

In an attempt to salvage this project before it crashes and burns right at the start, I’m determined to come up with something substantial for this post so I can say with good conscience that I have blogged this week.

I suppose I have been thinking a lot about the traveling portion of this experience, so I’ll start a list of dream places to visit.

WanderList:

Morocco– I have it in my head that Morocco will be one amazing marketplace after another.

Benin– I’d love to see some of west Africa,  the places my grandparents spent their lives, and raised their children.

Sahara Desert– Crossing this in a van with new-found friends sounds like a great idea, right, Mom?? 🙂

Egypt– Ever since sitting through many a French class with my Egyptian professor, where we ended up talking about politics, religion, and Egypt almost as much as French, I have been wanting to go see Cairo.

East African Safari– Isn’t this on everyone’s bucket list, though?

Jordan– Petra, anyone?

Lebanon– Reading “Children of Jihad” by Jared Cohen sparked this one.

Israel– The Holy Land for three major world religions–can only imagine how amazing it would be in person.

India– Everyone says you can’t go to India without leaving a changed person. At least everyone on the travel blogs…

Thailand– This has been on the list for as long as I can remember. The people! The landscape! The food!

New Zealand– For so many reasons.

Peru– A couple months language study, perhaps?

Brazil– I’m out of reasons. But why not?

I’ve been subscribing to BootsnAll’s email campaign for planning a RTW (Round the World) trip in 30 days, so I get daily emails to help plan everything from methods of travel to how to tell your family, friends, and bosses. One of the first things you’re supposed to do is pick the “pillars” of the trip–the things you absolutely must see or do. Perhaps sometime in the next year I’ll narrow this list down for the pillars. But for now, I’m dreaming big!

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