Stay or Leave?

April 5, 2011 § Leave a comment

“Our hearts are restless, until they rest in you, Oh Lord.” -St. Augustine

I don’t know if I like what I realized about myself and the life I’m creating today.

I realized that perhaps my gypsy nature is a way for me to avoid the feelings of loneliness, failure, sadness. Searching for new experiences, adventures, living life without a set plan, means that I’m rarely bored and that because I don’t have plans, I can’t be disappointed when plans fall through.

I come to this realization timidly. And I know it is not completely true. I’ve always loved an adventure. I’ve always known life is short and I want my life to be exciting. But, I also want to do something memorable. I want to set the world on fire. I want to make just one person’s life better for having known me. And I hope I can accomplish these things and still have the adventures I long for.

If I pack this up, can I just take home with me?

But, part of the problem with not staying anywhere long, is that I take a long time to let myself settle in. I tell myself, “I won’t be here long. Its ok not to get attached.” But, eventually we all need those personal connections, and I love to love. I love taking care of people, having friends. So I make them. I get attached. And it hurts when I realize I’ll be leaving them again soon. I’m tired of missing people.

And the part the restless part of my soul knows that I need adventure. But, there’s another part of me. A part of me that, once it finds these ties and connections, wants to hang on for dear life. Maybe I strangle the life out of them. I savor every moment with my friends. Secretly, or not so secretly, I long to want to stay put. I long to call some place home. I long for stability.

So, am I doing that part of my soul an injustice by wandering? I know it allows me to keep a part of myself closed off, from new friends really getting in. But, yet, I want someone to. I want to let someone in. Do I wander because I’m scared of that happening? Because I’m scared of letting someone in and getting hurt? Maybe I just tell myself I can’t be hurt because it gives me an excuse not to be open.

This strikes me significantly as I know some of the friends I’ve allowed myself to make here are getting ready to graduate. I’m running off for my new summer adventure right as I’ve begun to find connections here. And I know, if I were staying in Texas, I’d be moving somewhere to work anyway, as would everyone else, so I’d have to prioritize friendships and nurture the ones that I haven’t given necessary attention to lately. I know when I get back, I’ll have a rough quarter, but I know I can still maintain friendships with some work. I think the work is worth it. But, the summer break points to the near horizon of moving away from here; a place that I’m finally settling into, a place that I’m finally letting myself feel connected to, a place I’m only slightly scared to call “home” because I know its fleeting.

The winds of change are going to blow strong soon. Can I hang on?

I know what you’re thinking: This is confusing. She wants to leave? She wants to stay? Kelsi has no idea what she wants.

Guess what? You’re right. I don’t.

I tell myself I’ll be happy wandering forever, and a part of me honestly will be. But then there’s that other part. That part that longs for a home. The part of me that is always kind of hoping that someone will just tell me where that home will be. The part of me that knows I can find a home and still travel, perhaps satisfying both sides of my nature.

And does my moving, my wandering nature, make me an unattractive friend? Does my instability make me undateable? Maybe people are scared of getting too close to the girl who can’t stay still. But maybe, and I’m scared to admit this, but just maybe, I’m waiting to meet someone who makes me want to stay. The conundrum and confusion with that desire is that I worry that if I don’t stay in one place long enough, no one will take on that challenge.

I’m waiting patiently to see which side wins. The side that eternally wanders or the side that plants roots and lets them grow. Its in God’s hands. This I know…even though I don’t always like his decisions.

Patience and hoping go hand in hand. So here I am, patiently hoping. Patiently hoping that I build a life that can satisfy both halves of my soul.

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