Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Trekking On


The summer is flying by all too quickly for me. Last week was the youth pioneer trek reenactment. We took 61 teenagers out into the mountains and woods and pushed handcarts through the rain, heat, bugs, and mud. Trust me when I say we don't do this for the fun. It's all about the "experience."
It's hard work and it's hard on the body. But it is good for the soul.
I've always loved camping and hiking, so it isn't the worst thing in the world for me. I prepared myself physically by walking nearly 5 miles almost every day for 6 weeks in advance. I never suffered from a lack of stamina. (I was so proud of myself!) And my body held up pretty well. After the fact though, oh my word!, it hurts. The stiffness and soreness of walking 18 miles, and sleeping on the ground under a tarp in the rain does take some recovery. (So sore!!)
"Before" with 3 of my 4 Baby Ducks that went 
After - much stinkier, much dirtier, but still smiling
 About 2 weeks ago I had to make the very tough, very adult decision to not go to Europe with Clog America. If I had gone, I would have left today to fly to Zurich. It is breaking my heart to not be there. And it kills me a little inside each time I see a picture one of them posts from their trip.
It was a tough decision to make. I'm still trying to convince myself it was the right call. I couldn't justify going to Europe for 20 days and spending what money I have, when I don't know how long it will be until I have reliable income again. I'm heartbroken, but what can you do?

Settling into my life in Roanoke has been rough ride. Learning to live with my parents for the first time in 20 years has its ups and downs. Living with sister missionaries again has had its ups and downs. Learning to be someone's child, while also being the YW president, start my own business, write a book, and be the unofficial "third companion" to the missionaries has not been easy for me. Just learning how to balance being myself (an adult woman used to living on her own) and being someone's child has been tough. Juggling so many roles, not one of which I asked for or wanted, has really taken its toll on me.

But I'm happy enough. Things are okay. I could still really use a job, or for my business to come together and take off. Just having a routine and semblance of a normal life would be welcome at this point.

Bear with me. (Bare? Bear? I can never remember.) It's going to be a rocky road before it's a smooth one.

Monday, June 08, 2015

The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same

My favorite picture from Awesome Con. This was the "Debate 2015: Which Superhero would Make the Best US President?" panel.

The last few weeks have been crazy busy for me. And it all came to a full stop 2 days ago.
I've been writing like a madwoman, getting books ready for Awesome Con. Then I went to Florida with girlfriends for a few days (where I was introduced to Escape Rooms, and fell in love with the concept, and you'll hear more about that in the future I think). And then came home, turned around, and went straight to DC for Awesome Con. Got through that, came home, did some work for a client, and BOOM, it's all done.
No more work.
No more jobs.
No more clients.
Now I just live in Roanoke with nothing to do.
Well, for a few days or weeks anyway. I may not have a paying job, but I'm still busy enough on my own. (I'd much rather have a paying job though!)
Me at Awesome Con. My shirt had a cape on it. I went straight from Awesome Con back to Roanoke without changing clothes. I wore this shirt for about 18 hours. There was a massive thunderstorm that caused me to pull off at a truck stop in the middle of nowhere southern VA for a while. Next thing I know people are pointing at me, and bringing their kids over to look at me, and one lady asked to take a selfie with me. I completely forgot I was wearing a cape. It caused quite the scene. 

I was "called" as the Young Women's President at church this week. If there are non-Mormons reading this, that means I am now the volunteer in charge of the 12-18 year old girls. I am responsible for making sure there is a teacher for the Sunday lessons, and an activity every week. And for getting the girls to youth conference and girls camp this summer. Among other things. And getting called in mid-June means hitting the ground running. We have youth conference in 2 weeks. I will come home from that, shower, nap, and get in a plane to fly to Europe for a few weeks. I come from Europe, where I will possibly have to go from the airport to girls camp. If I'm lucky I'll get to come home and sleep in my own bed for a day.
(It's going to be madness!)
I'm very excited and humbled for the chance to work with my Baby Ducks again. I've watched these girls grow up and love being a part of their lives. It's different this time because I'm the organization president, and not just one of the advisers. That's the intimidating part! When I think about how influential my YW leaders, particularly the presidents, were in my life, it humbles and overwhelms me that I now play that role in someone (15 someones) else's life. I suppose in many ways I was already playing that role for them, since I've been around since many of these girls were 12. But it's hitting me harder now that I'm the president.

So here I am...
Back in Roanoke, serving the Baby Ducks, and looking for a job.
Sounds familiar, doesn't it? 

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