Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Dreamin' With My Eyes Wide Open

I'm a dreamer...and a doer.  I've had so many dreams--places I wanted to go, things I wanted to do, and people I wanted to meet-- and most of them have come true.  People tell me I'm a "go-getter" and are marveled by the things that I have accomplished and experienced in 22 (almost 23) years.  It wasn't until recently when I read my senior affirmation letters from my friends in the Duke Wesley Fellowship that I actually started listening. (Side note: Wesley is my campus ministry and the place I've called home for four years).

I believe my disinterest with people's fascination in my adventures stems from my small town roots.  Let me explain...  I'm from a VERY small town (I thought it was big until I found out that few public high schools in America graduate less than 50 kids on average).  Now, I am the first to tell you that small town does not equal small minds; however, when most people were born and raised in the area, and few have lived on a coastline, I am not surprised that they think my life is crazy awesome.  It is only recently that I have been able to fully appreciate just how amazingly blessed I am.

So here's my first blog post, as an adult.  These are the dreams that have come true with a lot of preparation and the right opportunities.

#1 Going to Duke (and graduating)
Four years flies by, especially when you're having as much fun as I did, but I made it and have a LOT to show for it.  The fancy diploma in its frame can't hold a candle to the friends and memories that I have in North Carolina and around the world with my Wesley family (throw your Dubs up!)

#2 See the world (or at least some of it)
In case you missed that semester I was "studying" in Italy, I got to see more of Europe than most people see in a lifetime, and I did it on the weekends throughout a semester.  Also, missions trips in Kenya, Guatemala, Eleuthera, and Canada gave me a greater appreciation for mankind and have truly opened my eyes to the brilliance and diversity of God's creativity in humans alone.

#3 Change a life
I now realize that you change people's lives, so this dream should have been to change it for the better.  I wanted to put this on my dreams, because it's always been a goal, but I think I know consider it more of a lifestyle that I'm working on every day.

#4 Find love
Condoleezza Rice spoke at Duke in the spring and I had the privilege of hearing her speak.  She said many inspiring things, but this thought stuck with me. "College is about finding a passion, not a career."  Now when people ask what I'm going to do for the rest of my life, I can tell them that I may not be certain of the career path, but I have found my passion.  I love kids and working with them is a job I'd do for free, so I can only hope that I can make a career out of it.

#5 Give it all away
In my Valedictorian address at the Fairview High School graduation four years ago, I said a lot of things, but even though I wrote the speech, there's only one or two things I remember.  I was tired of hearing the same quotes repeated (even though I love quotes), so I decided to write my own.  It may never be used in another person's speech, but it will forever be my life motto: "Give until you've got nothing left; then give of yourself."  When I feel like I've got nothing left, that always comes to mind.

I've got a few more dreams, and I believe that in a few years I'll be writing about how they played out and came true, but I am completely content with my life right now.  To bring all my friends up to date, this Okie is going to be a Georgia Peach soon.  As a US-2 missionary for the United Methodist Church, I will begin serving as the assistant chaplain at Murphy-Harpst Children's Center in Cedartown, GA in August.  I can't wait to share this next adventure with my friends that now inhabit all sides of the globe.

There are dreams to be had and things to be done.  To bed I go, and early I will rise. Night ya'll :)

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