The 100th post, 8 months ago today I posted my first blogpost.
This journey that I've been on through these 100 posts, has seen me travel across the globe, its seen me at my highest highs and my lowest lows too.
I've put into words how I've been feeling again, and again, and again, the anger, the love, the frustration, the tears, the wants, the dreams, the hurt, the hope, the rubbish, and the day by day events.
100 posts ago I was me, I was lost me, I was confused me, I was looking-for-direction me.
And I am still that me. I haven't really changed, at my core I am still me.
Yet there is change there, it is hard to miss. 100 posts later and I am still lost, confused, and looking for direction.
And the whole time I have been SO much more than that, and I have travelled, and I have learnt some things.
This year I have learnt what it means to 'dare to live'. Whenever I make a choice, whenever I see an opportunity, or want to change direction, I have this feeling within me and it knows, it simply knows how to dare to live, to live fully. To dare to live (safely).
I have grown a bit, I've developed, and I've seen new things. This year my eyes have been opened to a tiny glimpse of the world, to what is really going on out there.
And I feel completely terrified, and overwhelmed by it all, but, for now at least, I am clinging to the starfish. Remembering that change can come: one starfish at a time.
Am I a writer? I like to think so. I guess, really, it depends what you define a 'writer' to be. If it is simply, 'someone who writes' then that is me. I write when I hear these words forming in my head, and then I just start and it seems to flow. Sometimes I start, and I get no where. But I write, and I write, and I write.
So I am a writer, because I write. And I love to write. There is something completely Beautiful about putting the jumble in my head into a sort-of, slightly structured, almost-coherent sentence, and putting it out there for me to look back upon and for others to see too.
When I write I try to be honest, and the honesty has, at times, scared me, but ultimately in being honest with the words, I have learnt to be honest with myself.
To admit, to realise, and to begin to understand.
This year has been a CRAZY journey, I have made some AMAZING friends, and I have lost some too. I have met myself and said, 'wow, you are horrible'. But I have also learnt to be able to look in the mirror and see the Beauty in what God did, and continues to, create.
I have learnt to dream bigger, I have learnt to look for what I really, really, really want and then look even further.
And it is completely gutting when you write, and write, and write, and the computer screen goes blank and you realise you're going to have to start again, but perhaps that's another thing I have (perhaps) not learnt yet, but at least I have realised the importance of starting to learn it: patience.
The truth is, if you had asked me about patience a few years ago I'd probably have asked, 'what is the point of waiting?' To me it all seemed a little lazy, and a bit pointless too, and even a waste of time. But now, I am beginning to understand.
In it all I know I am just beginning, I am new to all this, and in some ways I am VERY scared.
So, right now, I am waiting for the time, for God to say it is time. And I have no idea how long I am going to be waiting for. At the moment, I don't have much choice, so this patience is not so much a choice, well (at least) the waiting is not a choice, the good attitude in the waiting, it comes and it goes.
Last night, it was really strong, I had this crazy excitement for what was to come, I felt like I was ready to live, I was ready to do all that needs to be done now, so that in a couple of years I can escape, and REALLY live. And I felt excited about what was awaiting me, now I am back in a dip.
But I think I've found out: life is a rollercoaster.
If it was just a coaster, I would be bored. And I would not learn, and I think there really wouldn't be a point.
The roller adds meaning.
Before I went to the Dominican Republic my brother, and sister-in-law, gave me a journal to fill in, and on the very last page my brother wrote, in his neat but beautifully scrawly handwriting 'Heading for God's beautiful somewhere...'
The first time I read that, it sort of dawned on me, 'somewhere' leaves this unknown thought, meaning it could be anywhere. And I found that anywhere, really does mean anywhere. So I don't really know where I am going to end up, but I do know that I want to head for God's Beautiful.
And what I found in the Dominican Republic was that God's beautiful really is anywhere, particularly in the places where the world wouldn't expect it. And it isn't always obvious, but that is what Kingdom-work is: uncovering His Beauty.
100 posts. The craziness of it, I like to say I've grown up, I've changed, the honest truth is, I don't really know where I've come to. But I am excited for what the future holds, and I am also wanting to live in the now.
Here's to an amazing year past: incredible new friends, and lost ones too, lessons learnt, mistakes made, moving on, another year over: ready for the start of the next one to come!
At the start of 2012 I was excited! I had so much planned, and I knew it was going to be amazing! It is almost the start of 2013, and I have got nothing in the diary, I have an empty year, perhaps?
A year ago I would have felt disheartened at the prospects of an empty schedule, I still do feel a bit like that, but there's another feeling too: one of excitement and expectation for what each day might bring: new opportunities, projects, things to be done.
If 2012 was the year I learnt what it means to dare to live (safely), I want 2013 to be the year that I dare to live in every single moment, seeking out the Beauty in everything.
100 posts. This journey has been freedom-giving, and releasing, and I am so, so excited to be able to continue it! Only God knows where the next 100 posts will take us, and I can't wait (I did tell you I'm impatient!) so here goes...hope you'll join me for the next step in my adventure!
Keep dreaming bigger. For ALL is grace.