I love learning and growing – even when it’s uncomfortable and hard. I am so grateful for all the lessons I have learned in life, as they’ve made me who I am and stronger every day.
This is Part 2 of the 10 lessons I have learned in the last 10 years. During this transitionary period on earth and in my life, the lessons continue. This post features:
1. Growth takes courage.
2. Perseverance is rooted in faith and compassion.
3. “Yes” and “No” should come from the heart.
4. I am responsible for myself, my actions, and reactions.
5. Connection and love give life meaning.
6. Anger and fear communicate to me.
Published February 27, 2020
I’m not exactly known for being succinct – in neither verbal or written words. I process and think out loud and words come naturally to me. One of the biggest challenges for me is packing my words into short, deliverable sentences. Packing a punch in a few words that I could easily remember was a challenge when writing things like affirmations, goals, and summaries. Sometimes, I do tell ridiculously long and silly stories. I remember my track team in college asking me to add “Then I found $20!” to the end of my long-winded stories that probably had absolutely no point, but hey, sometimes I’m just having fun! [#noregrets #thisisme]
Really though… It’s fun to play with thoughts that bounce around my mind. Most of my random thoughts and streams of consciousness end up on my Instagram captions (hence the spelling/spelling mistakes that probably flood my captions, despite my nerdy love for grammar). I’m really good at getting my word count up, but pretty shitty at getting it down (removing the word “that” has helped a lot… does anyone else use that word excessively when writing?! What is WITH that?). Also, I am 100% a verbal processor. I like to think out loud, working through my thoughts as the rise and fall in my mind. Anyways, I want to write a book one day, so I’ve gotta have enough words to fill a few pages, right?!
The challenge I gave myself with this NEW DECADE (of the 2000’s and OF MY LIFE) was to package all my lessons learned in the last ten years into TEN lessons. A decade of lessons from the last decade. How fun! Well, true life, this has been way harder than I anticipated. My brain has been buzzing with things I’ve learned, but the process of dissecting my experiences and what they’ve meant to me is a way I grow. I am a reflective and reminiscent individual with a scary strong memory. For this, I am blessed.More
Every time I dried my eyes and took a deep breath, my eyes would swell again as I saw him through someone else’s eyes. Waves of emotion crashed over and into me as I visualized his mother, father, stepmom, stepdad, grandparents. If I felt a void in my heart with him gone, what were they feeling? Imagining this was overwhelming and I felt lost inside of myself. I was attempting to grasp a reality that was incredibly difficult to face. Scanning my memories of loss, I couldn’t find the means to understand or digest all my coworkers and I were feeling. Yet, allowing ourselves to feel was enough for the time.
They say that grieving is a process, but the loss of a 5-year-old boy to cancer doesn’t seem to fit the traditional five steps of grief. The words “denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance” seem awfully empty and logical. They lack the depth of emotion we felt as we grieved the loss of our patient. As this little boy’s Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist, and Speech Language Pathologist, my coworkers and I learned that coming together to heal, learn, and support the patient’s family was one of the hardest things we’d have to do in our career. The complexity of this grieving felt like a two-part rollercoaster of emotions…More
Published October 23, 2019
Describing the “why” behind my dedication to Tanzania has required a lot of insight, thought, and research. I know why my heart keeps getting pulled back to Tanzania: the people, culture, mountainous & lush landscape, faith, love, and passion. Additionally, I’ve found a way to use my unique skillset to help with the increasing need for rehabilitation services. As my understanding of the need increases, so does the forward momentum of access to services for children and adults with special needs. I feel the pull from Tanzania and, as I’ve described before, I am willingly obligated to continue serving and understanding the people of this country.
In order to continue service in Tanzania, I have dedicated myself to learn more about the country from a broad, global perspective. I have been relentlessly curious about helping without hurting, poverty alleviation efforts, and general statistics regarding the world’s progress in education, rehabilitation, and more. As a huge portion of my dedication to Tanzania is facilitating others during international service learning opportunities, I feel it’s imperative I have a bigger understanding of the culture, people, and needs.
With my insatiable desire to learn, I’ve decided to share my research here! This way, I have a place to reference the information and share it with others, while also opening the door for input and gathering information from people like YOU! I can’t wait to learn together.
Read more for a zoomed-out view of Tanzania’s culture, plus the current state of rehabilitation in the world and Africa.More
Written September 16, 2019
How does one describe something that lives in the heart? It isn’t an emotion, but a feeling. It feels like walking into a familiar place, smelling freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, tickling your senses with nostalgia and comfort. It feels like getting a hug from someone you know and haven’t seen in a while, slowly and effortlessly melting into each other during your embrace.
It feels like tears of purification, happiness, and wholehearted gratitude every time I think about Tanzania.
Tanzania founds its way into my life and has dug a home in my heart. The complexities of my feelings around Tanzania and my experiences over the last few years is something I’ve tried to explain many times. This is my attempt to begin unpacking the intentions living in my heart.
You were not meant to be a one-time adventure. You have opened my heart in ways I know I could, but didn’t know how I would. You have brought me joy, faith, love, and hope. For this, I am grateful. For this, I am obligated to serve.More
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