This Is Living

I went to Sydney for the first time, and you need to come with me when I return to this beautiful city, for I am certainly going back.

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So much of this journey has been trying new things, and meeting new people. I am consistently amazed by the wonderful humans I have come to know. While it requires no effort to find something you dislike about a person, neither does it take much to see the beauty in the people around you.

This exhibit was definitely our favourite at the Museum of Contemporary Art. I think humans were made to make beautiful things. The amount of talent and creativity I have seen since coming here has been incredible. We are also being constantly bombarded with fresh wisdom every day, and I pray that I have the courage — and memory (or note-taking-ability) — to be able to apply it all.

Am I still freaked out sometimes that I am here? Yes. Do I miss my family and church? Definitely. Do I feel very incapable sometimes? For sure, but that is part of the adventure. Every day is a new lesson in, well, something different. How to cook, travel, make friends, work a camera, get up early, plan parties, get household chores done, finish homework assignments, and how to navigate friendships with boys... because those are possible, truly. There just needs to be mutual respect and honour; nevertheless, I am not going to act like I am naïve to what goes on in the minds of college kids when boy meets girl.

I have had some disasters over the past couple months, and I will admit to sometimes feeling like one myself. I tend to want to keep that close, and shut people out rather than let them see my failures and weaknesses. But I know that I cannot do life on my own, nor do I want to. I need help with everything, both big and small, and it is humbling but oh so worth it, to simply ask. I am continuously blown away by how much people care.

I find myself constantly at war; maybe you have felt this way too: I want to be alone, and when I am, I miss people; I want to eat good food, but cooking takes too much effort; I want a clean room, or clean clothes, or a clean kitchen, without having to clean it; I want to have my homework done early, but I want to do it later. Basically, I get lazy when it becomes all about what I want.

I forget that I am not living for me. Once it becomes about others, only then do I come alive, ready to serve, breaking out of self-centred habits. After all, I have everything I could want already. When I realize that and am truly thankful for what I have been given, I cannot help being generous with my life. My capacity to love will grow, and I will be moved with compassion. Rather than getting out of my way, I want anyone I meet on my adventure to be better off because they met me. And that — this way of living — starts now.

(Special thanks to my mate Darell for taking these amazing photos of me. Teach me your ways, bro.)