Remember that song I referenced in my blog post about my summer road trip? I became obsessed with it over the summer, being really drawn to the chorus…but I had no idea how relevant the rest of the song might become to me. So before I really begin reporting on some of what I’ve been going through behind-the-scenes in the past month, here’s a video of the song; feel free to watch it, and then continue reading the confessions of my first month by way of the song.
So now for thepast month…in song! (what better way to do it, right?)
Don’t know what time it is, I’ve been up for way too long
and I’m too tired to sleep
I call my mother on the phone, she wasn’t home,
and now I’m wondering the street
Sometimes I have been pretty restless…the primary reason for which is that I had a major falling-out with someone stateside, really early on, due to a lot of circumstances that I wish not to discuss here. And it’s been rough. I’m not even going to lie to myself and say it’ll be easy…because lost relationship takes its toll on me. But luckily I’ve had phenomenal friends in the US and in Colombia and in other parts of the world supporting me, praying for me, and being my rocks…my support system. And I am extremely grateful for them, because without them, I never would have made it through the month. It really showed me who I can depend on, through thick and thin. They’ve been my equivalent of the mother in this song (although I’ve been able to get a hold of them, usually, without issue).
I’ve been a fool, I’ve been cruel to myself
I’ve been hanging onto nothing
when nothing could be worse than hanging on
And something tells me there must be
something better than all this
I’ve fallen many times in love and every time
it’s been with the wrong man
Still I’m out there living one day at a time
and doing the best I can
Cuz we’ve all made mistakes
that seem to lead us astray
But every time they helped to get us where we are today
And that’s as good a place as any
and it’s probably where we’re best off anyway
For me, this relates to the aforementioned falling-out. At first, I had hoped that it could be restored quickly and I kept waiting for that to happen, but I have realized with time (and help from those fabulous friends I mentioned) that it’s not worth waiting. I need to live life and enjoy my time in Colombia. Did I mention I’ve really turned a corner on this whole thing? So for now, even though it still hurts, “I’m out there living one day at a time and doing the best I can”. Because that’s all I can ask of myself. Sure, it’ll get better…and I’ll learn from the mistakes that were made that led to the falling-out and hopefully I won’t repeat them, and they’ll help me become a stronger person and a better friend in the future. And yeah, they’ve shaped who I am, at least somewhat. But shouldn’t all strong personal experiences, for better or for worse? And I’m in a better place now than I was a couple of weeks ago in the heat of the falling-out, so I’m “best off” now in that I’ve moved past some of the initial hurt. I’m ready to experience Colombia and I’m confident that I can embrace life. So, yeah, “[I’m] probably where [I’m] best off”.
It’s a long and rugged road
and we don’t now where it’s headed
But we know it’s going to get us where we’re going
And when we find what we’re looking for
we’ll drop these bags and search no more
‘Cuz it’s going to feel like heaven when we’re home
It’s going to feel like heaven when we’re home
This is the chorus, what hooked me to the song; my understanding of it hasn’t changed much. The road I’m traveling down (whether it’s my road trip, or my life journey, or my time in Colombia) is “long and rugged” – there are imperfections and bumps – and I have no idea where it’s taking me, but I continue traveling along it, knowing that it’ll “get [me] where [I’m] going” (where I need to be). And when I find that, whatever it is, I’ll drop everything and be content, because it’ll be right (“like heaven when we’re home”). This chorus helps me to keep centered when things seem to be going wrong or are uncertain. And it reminds me to have faith in the journey, because both the journey and the destination (however unknown) matter, and once I reach that destination, I’ll just know. Of course, this doesn’t directly relate to my first month’s confession, but I think it’s a great lesson for me to keep in mind for the rest of my time here in Colombia.
There’s no such thing as perfect,
and if there is we’ll fnd it when we’re good and dead
Trust me I’ve been looking
but tonight I think I’ll go and take a bath instead
And then maybe I’ll walk a while
and feel the earth beneath me
I interpret the first lines not as pessimism but as an admission that the journey’s not going to be perfect, and if there’s something perfect to come, well, it probably won’t be in this life…but that’s all right. It’s a reminder we all need sometimes. Because even in the best of times, there will be challenges. Back to the situation that has been weighing on me, I’ve been looking for a perfect solution, but it’s just not there. So sometimes it’s just best to exercise good self-care; find a distraction (take a bath), read a book, watch Netflix (did I mention Colombia has instant play?!?), relax, go dancing (like I did on Saturday with some friends from work), “walk a while and feel the earth beneath me” (I really do enjoy doing this), enjoy life!
They say if you stop looking
it doesn’t matter if you find it
And who’s to say that even if I did
it’s what I’m really looking for
Really, I think this is again about the whole journey; I don’t know if we’re supposed to really know where we’re going or if we’re supposed to be looking for “it”, whatever “it” is, and I really believe that it’s about the journey and appreciating it for what it is. Because even if we were to look for something, would we necessarily find what we want or need? Maybe the road is just best traveled. Not explored, but simply traveled. Enjoy the journey (whether it be all of life, just a period, or just a circumstance), and if there’s a moment “when [you] find what [you’re] looking for” (or moreover what you need; what should be), you’ll just know, and you’ll be able to quit looking and bask in the beauty of the destination and the journey that brought you there, because it’ll feel like “heaven when we’re home”.
Now, some of you may ask if I’m all right, which I am, or at least I will be, given more time. Some of you may ask why I’ve chosen to write about this; how this relates to my time as a Mission Intern. Well, sometimes, it isn’t a perfect experience, and I’m am human, in a very human context, dealing with very human relationships and emotions. Some of you may have noticed that at times I’ve seemed a little distant in my correspondence or that sometimes I was a little down in the dumps. Well, that was part of my rugged road. I’m healing, and I’ve appreciated the support I’ve found along the way…the friends walking alongside me in solidarity, or in some cases, on their parallel paths. It has brought me closer to them in a way that I never could have predicted, and it has shown me a face of support I never would have imagined two months ago.
So I guess it’s all part of my long and rugged road…and you, as participants in that journey, ought to know the truth about the whole of that journey, for better or for worse. Thank you for your continuing support throughout it all.