I'm sitting in the Minneapolis airport, nibbling on a mediocre five dollar muffin. My flight to Seattle is three hours delayed; better than cancelled, I suppose. It does give me an opportunity to breathe, to think about what has been an what is to come. It's an appropriate place to do so, this place that is not a destination in itself but a stop in the transition from one place to another.
I suppose that is one good word to describe what I expect 2017 to be. As mentioned in my previous blog post, I complete my current commitment with Mercy Ships on June 1. This has been the date 'on the books' for several years, but suddenly we are in the same year, and it feels real. I love this organization, I love what we do, I love being a part of it. I also feel I have taken the medical capacity building programs to a place where it's time to hand over to someone else to continue to grow, build, keep making better and better. I'm ready for a new challenge, and there isn't another position open that would be a good fit.
So as I sit in this place of transition, looking ahead to the changes that are to come, I actually feel nothing but gratitude. I've thankfully already felt and survived the period of grief for what felt like the death of a dream; I've survived the fear that inevitably came, that thief that whispers you will never do anything as cool as this again. Lies, from the pit. Greater things are always yet to come.
So I look back with gratitude for all I have been able to do, to see, to be a part of; I am grateful for the consistent support I've received up until recently, for the friends and family that have loved and encouraged me through all the transitions, the challenges, the joys. Thank you, from the depths.
And I look forward with excitement to the road less traveled; the one that might not be the easiest, or it might not make the most sense, or be the most financially beneficial, or the most exotic, or whatever else the darkness might whisper I need to strive for. Rather, the road that is right for me, for a season or for a lifetime.
I've got one more class in my Masters degree in Public Health before getting to the thesis/dissertation stage; there is indeed a light at the end of the tunnel. Part of me is excited to reach the end and get that degree in my hand, while part of me will really miss it. I have always loved learning. Thanks to those who have supported this piece of my journey, too. It's allowed me to do my job even better, to broaden our impact in the countries we serve, to report it more clearly, and help get some of what we have learned out in to the realm of public knowledge. I'll finish that up somewhere in the middle of 2017.
Whatever I'm doing when 2017 draws to a close, it will certainly be different. I'm excited. I plan to keep writing, to keep growing, to keep speaking life and light and truth and joy. I hope that you will join me.
May 2017 be a year of unfolding goodness, of trust, of truth, and a true experience of life to the full.