I had already participated in One Spark and gone to Nashville. I have spent wisely enough during the school year to not need to get an extra job to fill in the gap this summer. The program that I worked the last two years was canceled due to budget cuts. I had eight weeks with absolutely nothing to do. Well, I take that back, the first week was a family vacation/trip to take my oldest nephew to college, but other than that, I was staring down the barrel of weeks and weeks with no planned agenda.
The main thing the summer gives me is the opportunity to sleep in later in the morning than I can during the school year. And, the extra few hours of morning sleep was really the only thing about which I was excited. Spending seven or more weeks at home, with just my cat, my television, my guitar and my thoughts to keep me company was a really scary proposition. Furthermore, I just found it to be outright lazy to sit around all summer and not do anything.
I have come a long way from the young woman who could not be alone. Still, I have managed to be sure that my life is filled with activity and people I love, so that the times when I feel lonely are few and far between. So, I challenged myself to do little to nothing this summer. I challenged myself to relax, get rest, be free and, well, be lazy. Not lazy in the sense of slothfulness, but lazy in the sense of not tying myself to a bunch of commitments just for the sake of having something to do.
For the first couple of weeks, I started to sense that I would become one with my couch and be imprisoned by my thoughts (a very scary place to be at times). Then, I started dedicating more time to stillness and quietness. I started communing more with God instead of running to everyone else in my life with my every thought or idea. And, slowly, but surely, I started to feel comfortable with me. I am not a hermit (though, I thought that might be where this was going). I do leave the house. I go to church. I hang out with my family. Nonetheless, a beautiful thing has happened.
I became okay with just God and me. I did not feel as alone as I once feared I would in quietness and solitude. It is still a work in progress, but no longer do I feel obligated to stay busy to avoid the fact that I do not have the life I envisioned. Instead, I can rest in my Father and allow Him to show me His vision for my life. Make no mistake, there are some rough days, but I have survived being by myself with nothing to do. I have more than survived; I have thrived. I have learned to enjoy this place of solace. Now, it might make it hard to go back to work in a few weeks, or maybe, I just will not feel so pressured to stay busy for the sake of being busy. Time will tell, but for now, I am enjoying the time that God has given me. Ms. EV