As I write this blog post, I’m sitting in a swing on my back porch in Carol Stream, Illinois, where I’m trying to appreciate just how much has changed since last Friday. [I’m also
sipping guzzling iced coffee, trying to appreciate this relentless 90-degree heat] My dad and brother left me this morning, so I’m alone in a new place in a new house with a new dog.
So naturally my emotional stability went from, “Okay, this is manageable,” to “All of the things are overwhelming,” in a matter of hours.
And it’s no surprise, because I’ve been focusing on the wrong things. I’ve only been here 48 hours, and the list of new/different experiences is too long. So, instead of indulging my fear of change and writing about how different the Midwest is from the Northwest, my first post from Illinois needs to focus on what hasn’t changed.
People don’t necessarily understand that I have never been to Illinois before, except when I flew into O’Hare Airport for two hours on a layover. I had never even been to the Midwest before Saturday (and I think I saw more corn in 6 hours in Iowa than I had seen in the first 22 years of my life). Moving to Carol Stream, rather than back to D.C., for the sake of a job was a BIG DEAL for me…and I still have my doubts that this is what I wanted.
After all, this isn’t really my dream job. I want to work in mainstream news. And I’m not very quiet about the fact that I want to be in D.C. Unfortunately, these are my “discontents,” and I let them make me miserable the past few weeks. I did not want to come here.
And then I remember that I did want this, not because I didn’t want those other things, but because I believed I needed to be faithful to God’s work in my life. Whenever I have put my heart and mind to a journalism-related task, God has opened the door. From The Falcon Flyer at Kentlake to The Falcon at SPU to The Washington Post, God has blessed me as a writer, and I picked this position because it offered me the best chance to continue doing journalism…even at the expense of other things I wanted.
So, it all feels overwhelming right now. It feels like I won’t fit in. It feels like I’m going to be lonely forever. It feels like too much change. But I keep trying and trying and trying to remember the way it felt in March when they offered me this position, when I believed God had opened an amazing door for my career. It doesn’t feel like that now, but I know that what I feel isn’t always true.
And what’s true is that I came here on faith, and I believe in a God who is faithful, too. God is faithful to his promises – and God has promised to work all things out for the good for those who put their faith in him.
That hasn’t ever changed.
[Many more posts to come — about the road trip, about the new living sitch, about everything new in Illinois. There will be plenty of time (really, plenty of writing time in the next few days) to dwell on change, which I know I will survive. I just needed to remind myself of this for now.]