Life Chronicles

The Winter of ‘Thirteen On Campus

Fall turned to winter, and the gray, snowy/rainy days of January, February, and March crowded themselves into my life as “the winter quarter” – one of the busiest and most stressful times of my life. Truly, every day was scheduled from start to finish and there were days when I just felt like I couldn’t breathe. Although I enjoyed everything that I was involved in, I came to a realization while talking with friend Tiffani at the end of the quarter … that just because I have an open spot in my schedule doesn’t mean that I should automatically fill it with something. In fact, she told me that next quarter I need to schedule in social time – which for me, sounds like the perfect idea!

Yet in spite of all the stress, there was a beauty to the winter quarter all of its own as I continued life on campus and experienced new joys and memories. Here’s just a little capsule of them for you to peek into as I close the door on another section of my schooling:

New Experience – Fast Fitness
Enrolling in a two-credit class where you can go to the gym and work out whenever you want as long as you got in forty visits by the end of the quarter … what could be a better motivator for me to start exercising again? Although there were some mornings I loathed getting up to go work out, as soon as I stepped outside and the sharp air hit my face, and I breathed in lung-fuls of it, a rush of energy filled my body. Indeed, it was the perfect way to keep my body healthy in the middle of busy life.

Sharp pains assailing my back mid-quarter threatened to put an end to the progress I was making, but it actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise. I’ve despised running on the treadmill in the past because of how boring it is, but I knew I had to be kind to my back, so with book in hand, I begrudgingly climbed on the treadmill and took up the slower pace. But because of this, I finished the inspirational book So Good They Can’t Ignore You and got through all four of The Books of Ember. It revitalized my reading once again, and I’m so thankful that back pains happened after all.

Old Experience with New Friend – Emma
Some things are just worth re-visiting, especially with friends who haven’t seen them before … and the BBC mini-series of Jane Austen’s Emma was the perfect way to spend evenings with Danika Beth. We’d watch an hour every night, simply in laughter and enjoyment of misled Emma, dear Mr. Knightley, and the pen of Jane Austen (AND the British accents of course!). It will forever and always be my favorite tale of said author …

New Memories – Sharing My Faith & Streeter Life Group
If ever my faith was built, it was this quarter … going out sharing my faith on campus for the first time with friends from Cru and growing so much closer with the girls in our Streeter Bible Study due to the “I Am Second” series. Tears, laughter, prayer, vulnerability … I couldn’t be more thankful for the family of faith that God has been building on campus that I get to be a part of. And who knew what joy comes when you take that step of faith to reach out and have conversations with people about the love of Christ? As He promised, my joy was made complete in Him.

Continued & Deepened Love – the Theatre
There’s also a special family that is built within the theatre – any theatre as I’m coming to find out – but I’m so glad that I got to experience it on campus with the Eastern theatre family. Our Acting I class (continued from the two Voice & Movement classes in the fall) grew together so close that the day when we showed up and Sara wasn’t there, we couldn’t bear to just leave so we just stayed and played improv games. What other college class do you actually want to stay for when the instructor is gone?? It’s true … there were days when that acting class felt like therapy – exactly what I needed. Not to mention that it grew me in so many ways as an actor, I will be forever changed by it. And of course, there was getting to work box office for the winter show, Ode … us box office girls have the most fun! 🙂 I’m ever so sad that next quarter will be the first since coming to Eastern where I don’t have a theater class, but hopefully I can still be involved with the spring show.

Confirmed Even More – Teaching Is What I Was Meant For
I also got the privilege of teaching a class at CYT called “Character Through Song” for teenagers, which was basically acting for musical theater. It made my Tuesdays the longest day of the week, but I wouldn’t trade those two hours every week for anything. The joys of sharing knowledge with those twelve girls and seeing them grow so much in just ten weeks was one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve ever had. I couldn’t have been more proud of them when they performed at showcase, and it was absolutely the best confirmation that I was made to be a teacher.

And all the in-betweens … getting to see Christina TWICE this quarter … serving dinner with some of my HYPE kiddos at a teen homeless shelter … watching and helping them put on a beautiful Valentine’s Ball … late-night talks and prayers with Danika … Friday night excursions into Spokane with the roomie, Briseida … weekends of pure rest at home with my family … learning to love in new ways … and surrendering my heart to my Savior in ways only He knew could satisfy me. It’s been tough at times, but it has also been beautiful.

And one of the best parts came at the end … getting a call saying I was placed at an elementary school here in Spokane for the spring quarter to start my observation hours. It’s actually happening … it’s a real thing … and I’ve got a smile in my heart, so ready to learn all I can about being a real classroom teacher.

Life is good, this journey is a fascinating winding road, and I am a blessed girl.

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