September 8, 2017

Checking In

'What a long and strange journey it's been....' for the past few weeks anyway! In the last month I've wrapped up my 2 summer jobs, moved back into my dorm on campus, helped guide orientation for the freshmen, and started class! It's been a really busy few weeks for sure but it's also been rather emotionally exhausting. 

Orientation is a whirlwind 5 days, especially for the new freshmen and transfer students coming to live in this new place. I vividly remember being vastly overwhelmed when I went through orientation as a freshman myself so as a helper, I really wanted to ease the process as much as possible for the freshman in my group. What I don't think I was expecting as much was the emotional and physical toll orientation took on me. There are specific, sometimes difficult, topics that need to be discussed when it comes to living on college campuses in particular and I don't think I was as ready for the full impact of emotions that the discussions and presentations brought about. It was a struggle to keep it together sometimes! Orientation also brought about really long days where we were busy from 8am to 11pm and, though I loved the whole experience and can't wait to do it again, it was very exhausting at times!

My grandmother's passing, while it certainly doesn't hurt with the sharp, ever-present pain I felt after it first happened, is still a present and active force in my life. At random times I'll find myself thinking of her or wanting to call her and tell her about my day and that familiar ache starts up again. More often, I'll get compliments when I wear the necklace she gave me and it makes me think about her and the fact that I'm wearing it because she can't anymore. Learning to live with this kind of grief is a new experience for me. Previously the biggest personal loss I've experienced was the passing of my childhood pet which, while still very emotional for me, has no bearing on the level of emotion felt during and after my grandmother's passing.

I've really missed my blog but I think this time away gave me the space to reflect on my new priorities and how I can best continue, to the benefit of the blog and for me. I'm happy to say that I'm still committed to this little creative expression of mine, and can't wait to see where it takes us in this last half of the year! Thanks for sticking with me butterflies -- I have a feeling it's going to be a wild ride and I can't wait to share it with you.


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