Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Back and relaxing

I made it back to the United States about a week ago and have been relaxing in New Hampshire since my return. It took me a little while to get over the jet leg and to get readjusted to the States, but I think I have finally made it over that hurdle. It was a little entertaining as I came back and felt normal the first day, but the next couple of days proved to be a little more tiring and challenging.
As I boarded my plane in Zurich, Switzerland I knew I had 40 days until I would be on a plane again headed back to BFA. In the big picture that 40 days seems short, and will no doubt go by quick. While in one sense that is a disappointing thing, at the same time it is really exciting. I will in no way deny that a period of relaxation is going to be amazing. It is needed and something I am going to take advantage of to the Nth degree. Meanwhile in my heart I know I am already counting down the days until I can get back to BFA, and get going with another year.
As mentioned in previous posts, it was very difficult to part ways with the graduating seniors. There are many students that have become near and dear to me, and it has been difficult to be away from them. In many ways it did not 'hit' me even after graduation. But the morning of my flight home I put a status update on facebook (which I rarely do) regarding my trip home. It was almost as if at that precise moment I felt the realization that the seniors were gone. Even though they graduated and were out of Germany, I was still in the country. For some reason even though I was still in the country it felt as though the year had not officially ended. However, when I knew I was leaving my heart fully realized the year was over. I knew I would be back next year, which brings great excitement, but it also brings the realization that when I go back in the Fall, those seniors won't be there.

As for the next few weeks, I will be relaxing and spending as much time with family and friends as I can. I am about to take off on a mini road trip out to Pennsylvania. I will be gone for 5 days/4 nights and will meet up with a lot of friends from college. I am really looking forward to this trip as it has been at least a year since I have seen these friends, and some it has been over two years.
After that I will do a little traveling with my mom, and former high school french teacher, which will be phenomenal.
In addition to these trips, I have decided to run another marathon. There is a marathon in Basel, Switzerland (about 25 minutes away from BFA) in September that I will run with a co-worker. So I have started training for this and will thoroughly enjoy the training process and the challenge of running. My running of course has to be strategically planned so I don't miss too many World Cup games.

Please feel free to contact me throughout the summer, and if there is any chance we can meet up, I would be blessed to do so.


Saturday, June 12, 2010

End of the year

Those who know me well will attest that I am not one who tends to be over dramatic. Therefore, I mean it when I say; I am tired and my heart hurts. We have just come through the busiest time of the year with almost nonstop activities. I know I have not put up a blog in a few weeks, and that is for two reasons. First of all, I am very proud of our girls soccer team, and our season, and wanted to make sure you had an opportunity to read about our season. Secondly, there really has not been that much time where I could post. Since tournament we have had; spring party, dorm outing, senior recognition day and dinner, middle school awards ceremony, high school awards ceremony, spring choir concert, alumni games, senior recognition at church, and the grand-daddy of them all, yesterday was our Graduation ceremony.

Right now I am tired. It is more than your occasional lack of sleep physical weariness. Granted, I have gotten close to 14 hours of sleep over the past three nights, but I know that is not the entire reason behind my fatigue. It has been a long year, and a long semester. Long does not immediately bring a negative connotation, though there were definitely moments of difficulty. It has been an intense year that has slowly but surely worn me down. I have not had the ability to reflect on the entire year yet, but hope to do so over the next few days as I wrap everything up. After giving my heart and mind the ability to reflect I will be sure to put up a post. I will honestly say that I am tired from the year. I will not deny that - but in the very next breath, through the weariness that covers my face I will boast a large smile, get excitement in my voice, a tear of joy in my eye, and say that it has been such a good year. Always easy? No. Always fun? No. Good? Absolutely.

Right now my heart hurts. Unfortunately this is not a new feeling, but one that has been there for about ten days. I cannot remember the precise moment but I know there was a day where reality hit my heart like a ton of bricks. I sat down at my desk, put my head in my hands and through tears said, "Soon I will have to say good-bye to them." The days since this realization have been amazing, but have been emotionally heavy. Our commencement ceremony was phenomenal as we celebrated the 78 graduating seniors. There was laughter, excitement, encouragement, good-byes, sadness and tears. My heart is hurting because I know I will miss this group of seniors more than I can express. There were 10 seniors from Sonne who graduated. Additionally, 10 of the 18 soccer girls were seniors, multiple graduates were a part of the Kenya mission trip from last year, and many more became friends through our time shared at BFA. It has been amazing to see the growth these seniors have gone through over the past two years. It brings such joy to my heart to see who they have become.
I have a strong desire to brag about them, but I know that I am emotionally drained. I feel as though if I were to attempt to share some of their amazing stories with you at this moment, I would be doing them an injustice. Therefore I use the cop-out phrase, "a picture is worth a thousand words" and hope these pictures show a hint of how special these students are.
In closing - yesterday while at Grad I stood by a dorm dad from a different dorm who has become a good friend of mine over the past two years, and he said to me, "This is a very special place. Look at these kids, they are special." I enjoyed simply standing and watching the kids hug, interact and love on each other. They are very special.
The good news amongst all the heavy and sad emotions...I will be back here in 45 days getting ready to start another year!

The entire class up on stage

Hats in the air! It is official, they have graduated!!

The tears of good-byes are never easy, nor fun.

Even though they are graduating, doesn't mean we can't have a moment to be goofy!