Uncomfortable: Lessons Learned
I spent the last 4 months living in DC and I can say with confidence I did not realize how unprepared I was. I am sure I will do another write up in the future in more detail, but here are my initial thoughts after returning from Washington DC to Houston TX. Some of these tips to myself would have been beneficial to have had in mind in the beginning of experience, but Hey! Better late than never.
CALL HOME OFTEN.
You don’t realize how much a simple conversation with family eases your mind and theirs. It is ok to feel home sick (strange feeling that I don’t normally succumb to, but it hit me hard) ,and no the stranger on the side of the road doesn’t resemble your friend; maybe you’re imagining things.
METRO RIDES ARE AWKWARD SO ENJOY STARING.
I would make up life stories of people I saw on the train. I gave them a family, job, sometimes kids and then role play a whole scenario in my head which lasted a couple of minutes before moving onto my next subject.
ALONE DOES NOT EQUAL LONELY.
Not living in a college setting legitimately makes it increasingly difficult to make friends, especially when working with professionals many years older. Spent a good number of nights in bed wanting to connect with someone on a deep level. This took time but throwing myself in the the right circles helped.
SHARE LOVE, BE OPEN.
I have encountered genuine friends there who have embraced a stranger like me.
CRYING IS OK.
I’ll be honest, I have never cried so much in the span of 4 months the way i did while living in DC. From something simple like a song playing in my headphones as i walk the street, my eyes could tear up. Also Quiet times led to many moments of reflection and appreciation for the journey I’m on. Crying is human.
I mean this literally and figuratively. Being unsure of what i was getting into made me overpack in an attempt to be prepared and what I found is that I barely touched some of the items I brought with me. Don’t burden your journey with extra luggage; let them go. Drop the excess baggage, pick up your essentials and keep it moving.
GOD IS A PROVIDER.
He showed me this is more ways than I can count. I knew having an unpaid Internship will require intense financial budgeting but I underestimated what I was getting into. God showed me comfort in a way that blows me away.He made me see contentment in him in a tangible way.
I survived the packed public transportation, being carless. I survived the emotional breakdown moments. I survived a legitimate winter season. I survived
I would not change anything about this experience.
This is what I get for praying that hard prayer, asking God to surround me with uncomfortable situations and settings. Situational comfort seems like a luxury but it often becomes a crutch. I am glad for these past months of discomfort.