Sunday, August 24, 2014

I'll Find A Way

Big Lessons In Little Moments

For the most part I'd say I'm laid back, mostly. Adversity definitely brings the biggest opportunities for me to learn. The past few weeks have brought quite a few tests of my patience and tolerance for stress. It's not always fun looking back at the tough times, reliving the emotions because we don't like what we did or who we were in that moment of pain, but it's in those times when we learn the most about ourselves and become that much closer to the universe.

The World is only as colorful as we paint it.
Fate, I believe in that. My trust in the universe is constantly tested because if it weren't, how would I know that I really believe it. My Spanish visa has been a continuous problem. Now after a hours of waiting and a tear-filled consulate appointment I'm certain I will not arrive on the time promised. After sniffling behind a chocolate milkshake I started thinking, What had I done wrong? Karma, the universe always pays you back. I'm not perfect but still a pretty good person. So I thought and thought...Why was the universe punishing me!?-- ok less dramatic, what was it trying to teach me? 
A little reminder to be happy :)

"Everything Happens for a Reason"

The universe isn't just an after effect but also a spring board into something new. My stress level was at the breaking point,  hours at the gym managed to stray my mind for a little while but as soon as my heart rate came down I was back to stressing. I couldn't figure out my mistake so instead of griping over the problems, I accepted the situation for what it was and opened my heart to whatever the universe had planned for me. And wouldn't you know it, as I let fate work it's magic it started working to help me.
 Amazing birthday necklace from my aunt. A piece of my family that I can have with me everywhere I go.
"Always in our hearts. Dream it, do it, live it." 

Soccer and Storms

A little time in the Rain and I was feeling like a new rain-freshened me.

Rain and soccer are my best stress relievers. The fact that I could have both within days of each other had me feeling better already. My dad signed me up for an elite soccer camp this weekend. Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) the soccer league that encompasses the nation's top players. Naturally, I envisioned these girls all my life, something like my heroines of soccer. Never did I think I'd be able to play beside them, but here I was still a little pissed and determined to prove something, though I wasn't quite sure what yet. After the first session of drenching, demanding work I took pride in what I had accomplished. They were good but I kept up. I went to shake the coaches hands and the director asked to speak to me. He wanted to know if I'd like to play for his team (YES I WOULD FLIPPING LOVE TO!) but, Spain. He asked when I would be leaving. September-- I would have said first but now I had no idea. "About a month". He said I could contact him if I was interested in playing for the time I was here. AHHHH!! My anger from the passed week melted behind my excitement and my pride. Sweaty and exhausted I sat down and looked up from my cleats, smiling. The universe does work in some weird ways.

Emergency Kayaking: Teens in Need of Fun!

Water, whether it's falling from the sky or flooding a kayak, I Love It.

Sofy working hard while I took a few pictures like a lazy bum.
The water just broke into green and I wanted to dive into the emeralds.

 Take a Breather

So there you have it. Fate can be very funny with me but even when I'm feeling broken I do my best to never stop trusting it. There are so many different paths in life most of which we can't see right away. In the end things work out, in the end I'll get to Spain and in the end, the real end, I'll be able to look back at the life I've made and smile. 

Keep smiling :)

Friday, August 15, 2014

Sunshine Kingdoms and Rainy Days

A Series of Unfortunate Events

Sometimes we just have those days, when EVERYTHING seems to go wrong. I'll make the negativity as quick as possible because it isn't my favorite thing to talk about. I have been having some problems getting my visa for Spain and that has put a lot of stress on me and my parents. Tension had been building since the first "I'm sorry to inform you..."

Every sunrise is a
 chance for a beautiful day.
I've also been taking online classes so that I can be finished with my graduation requirements before I leave for Spain-- if I leave for Spain! (Only kidding, I know I'll get there!) Any way that has been a monotone routine of watching a nameless hair mass waggle through a lecture on economic patterns and why her love of food makes her a prime consumer, but by this point all I'm thinking of is how good spaghetti sounds and how much her hair resembles the delicious dish.-- See this is the kind of sidetracking that prevents me from succeeding in an online class, but I had made it to the Final Exam and giddy anticipation I clicked Begin and received "ASSESSMENT LOCKED PENDING APPROVAL"  Wait WHAT?! Soooooo I had been speeding through my classes only to be slapped with a stop sign. Grrr not the way I wanted to start my morning but ok the day is still young.

I was desperate for some redeeming factor in this way off day. My dad suggested a little kayaking trip-- umm yes! Time on the lake and a little sweat, my favorite combination! Sweet I can fix this day! Perhaps I spoke too soon. I'm new to the area and ended up parking on the wrong street meaning we had to run there in the 97% Texas humidity. But that was still ok, just a warm up. I rushed to the rentals window, excited to finally get on the water and forget the stress. "Do you have ID?." ID? What no, I ran here! I wasn't carrying a wallet?! So that kind of blew our lake day.

I was fuming and once again took a wrong turn getting us stuck in at least 30 minutes of rush hour traffic. GAHhhhHHHHH. I could not handle it. Remember when I said I'd make the negativity go by quickly? Sorry it's taken so long. Basically this day was destine to piss me off. And what do I do with anger, run it out. Just run until the blood is in my ears blocking out the thoughts of anything beside Inhale. Exhale. Inhale.

Runner's High

A path in the woods can
take me anywhere.
Feeling like a warrior in my own mind, I charged forward into the sticky heat. Man was it hot, my own frustration was transpiring into the burning sun and stale air. My lungs were begging for something that wasn't dry and wasted, but being the "warrior" I thought I was I had forgotten to bring water. Don't stop just keep going! As the taste of pennies subsided and signs of cramping all gone, I reached that point. Pumping my arms banging my way down the street each drop of sweat took a little frustration out of me. The sky started turning gray and yes I heard it, Thunder. Rain is my absolutely positively favorite by-product of mother nature. I LOVE IT! So with each rolling rumble I sped up chasing the dark clouds. Come one rain come on! I stopped.

Liquid Diamonds

The sky opened up and there was a little pocket of sun, no clouds and would you believe from that gap in the gray came a mysterious sprinkle. At first I wasn't even sure it was rain. And then, down-pour. Hundreds of little lights falling out of the sky, I was so mesmerized. My heart had been pounding from the run and now it was pounding for the rain. I sprinted down the hot concrete until it turned to moist grass then slippery mud. It was so breath taking. I stood with my hands up to the sky, twirling in the wet diamonds that flew down and splashed into me. Drip by drop I felt reborn. I was jumping around like I was 5 again This is my sunshine kingdom. I ran, danced and happily fell to the ground. Closing my eyes I let the water drop in my mouth, wash over skin, pool in my belly button. Pretty soon I could feel the drops get smaller and the thunder softer. I sat up and looked out at the concrete path that I'd be taking back. The heat was claiming my diamonds, but this time in a beautiful way. It rose in mystic foggy horse, galloping up from the hot tar and swirling into the sky again. Despite feeling amazingly rejuvenated I couldn't explain how heavenly the water fountain across the park looked. The light was just playing off it's rusty metal, pulling me from my spot in the grass. I sprinted to in and, no water. Laughing I realized reality was back to bite me in the butt except I'd take it better this time.

Rain in Spain

I keep forgetting that this blog is supposed to be about my exchange but I find myself constantly going off on of tangents. Well let's see if I can make all these thoughts and emotions, all these tangents line up with preparing for Spain.

I understand how difficult next year is going to be. This anger I felt will come again, along with confusion, loneliness and I'm for a little while I'm going to feel lost. Hitting that low will be tough for me because sometimes I think I'm invincible, like being an exchange student makes me some kind of super hero and it does-- after I get through all the tough times. There will be many rainy days, the kind where I want to go out and dance in it and the kind where I want to stay in and hide form it all. When I concur it all, only then can be super hero and eve then I'll have a lot more rain to handle. 

There are clouds in the sky...

But still no rain..

Waiting on the Rain

I've been waiting to get rain like that day again, so I could snap a few pictures for the blog. I want you all to see the magic I was seeing. But sometimes nature is just to beautiful too perfect to be trapped in four corners. I guess my sunshine kingdom will forever stay a part of my memory. Then again, the sun is always waiting behind the clouds.

With a little patience, we all get that sunshine.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Something Like Goodbye

See Ya

Goodbyes used to be detrimental events. We'd hide from our parents at the end of a play-date just to keep it going a little while longer. I know I'd come up with all kinds of excuses as to why every night was a need for a sleepover! But all play-dates come to an end and the little goodbyes that are only "see you tomorrow" hurt a lot. It could have been my hyperactive childhood I had that never allowed me to sleep, but nights were the worst. I'd think of all the fun games I could be playing with my friends and how the time between goodbye and hello again seemed so stupidly long. Those goodbyes were very small. I didn't know that until I had to say the real ones.

Way back then, when it only took minutes to make friends.

Until We Meet Again...?

My first move brought on the first round of real goodbyes the "I may possibly and most likely never see you again", goodbyes. Yeah, those ones suck the most. That term "Ugly Crier" my picture would be perfect for the dictionary definition. My eyes swell up red and my whole face takes on a strong resemblance of a lobster. I remember huddling with friends in the backyard, beside my favorite swing-set cry, cry, crying.  This pain was beyond the pain I'd felt when my hamster Gussy died. And the tears, oh the burning tears would not flipping stop! Hiccuping my way to the airport, that was the first lesson of Goodbye. I was only getting started.

Holding on because we can't let go.
Never goodbye's, just a lot of love and reunion plans.

Professional Leaver

Years later. With so many moves, so many homes and so many goodbyes, I'd consider myself fairly good at leaving. Each time in a good/bad way, it's gotten easier. Does that mean I'm less sentimental or even heartless (Maybe it's that annoying "growing up" nonsense that everyone talks about) Either way the tears become smaller and the pain less... painful. I feel guilty when I'm hugging goodbyes and my usual lobster tears don't surface. I can just feel it, when I know this isn't the last goodbye. People have so many different paths. I mean we go everywhere, do everything, we are amazing beings. I just can't bring myself to believe in this great big world of choices and coincidences, that I'll never see the people who mean so much to me now.

Years apart and this Squad remains stronger than ever.

The Reunion and The Rekindling

"Fate is a fickle mistress", well she has brought me all over the place. More often than not she brings me to the places I've been missing, in the best cases, into the arms the ones I've been missing. Each time those goodbyes seem to disappear easily, buried in the hugs and laughs stitch years apart, together. Saying goodbye so much has made me a ok with the idea of leaving. Maybe I've gotten tougher or something. Or maybe I finally realize that there is something on the other side of goodbye. A distant but not so far away "Hello"