Yesterday marked the first day of the 2012 year and as I was drifting to sleep last night I had a flood of memories and richness that created my 2011 year of life. So, today I sat down and scribbled my thoughts on 2011 out on a piece of paper and thought I'd transfer it to my blog.
I have always been fascinated by time; the growth of it, the power of it, the aging of it.
This past year of my life has been the richest I have come to know. There will never be enough paper, enough words to capture the immense depth and beauty of it.
Working for Invisible Children, in my opinion, one of the most effective social justice organizations and learning how to step down from that mountain top has been the most character-building, belief-pondering, confidence-endearing thing God provided me breath and a capacity for. It will never, for as long as I live, be shaken from who I am. It is forever a part of my entire being.
Within 2011 I learned so much about my mind, my heart, even this soul of mine. I was consistently pushed passed my exhaustion, carried through even when I felt insecure about who I was and what a then 19 year old could accomplish. But, once I believed that not another soul in this life could extend God's love the specific way I can through my heart--- I realized I couldn't limit what was to be offered by me. I have never reflected so much, changed so much, loved so much, and let others love me so much than in 2011. I shared a story across this country that roughly, within a year reached nearly a million individuals--a million more individuals who are now aware of Kony's reign of terror. A million more individuals who have fundraised millions of dollars to end a tragedy that has killed and abducted 10s of thousands and displaced millions.
2011 had its share of heartache, but the way that pierces the soul in such a profound way, is something I will never fully understand. January 1st 2011 marked the 2nd year of Will's passing, July 11th marked the year of Nate's passing...and although I never met Nate I cannot even articulate the amount of life change he brought to me as I toured his story across this country. July 18th marked the year of Chris' passing. and December 15th is the afternoon that Dustin's life was taken by a man who then took his own life.
As much as you can ache from an absence of a friend, of a life, of a particular character, of a particular being who can spread laughter and smiles. There is this overwhelming amount of comfort knowing that a Heavenly Father's embrace is what we are all in pursuit after, whether we acknowledge it or not.
"He/she was taken too soon or too young" is an irrelevant statement; in every circumstance. However, you truly have to digest that reality. What keeps me sane is knowing that there is no such thing as a life lived too short. And although it breaks me sometimes, to the point where I can no longer see where to clutch onto the Lord, something saves my crumbling soul. It is the truth and beauty knowing that I will never fully know, feel, nor understand how much my Heavenly Father loves me while I am walking on this earth. And although death stings because I forget this knowledge, there is something far beyond my comprehension knowing that my friends were taken home by the One who supplied them with their first breath and the One who said come Home
That will one day happen to me and to you. Until then, give all of you. Because you, my friend, cannot be reproduced. So, live like it.
Life is so precious. People are so significant and worth it. And I would never change the friends that surround me. They are friends who are constantly blowing my mind with their vast amount of beauty, knowledge, courage, drive, and wisdom.
And so now it is 2012. And now I am 20. A new year and a new age, with new markings. Another year of love, laughter, knowledge, growth, embracing flaws, and just being a human. Fully flawed and fully capable of extending grace to others at the same time. What a year this will be.
Here's to living life, breathing in its beauties and the things I will never fully know but that I still enjoy.
What a gift.