I’m writing to you from the blurred light of a thousand stars that the city insists on chasing. My legs are numb because it feels like I’ve just run one of my best races, one of the ones that makes life feel like some euphoric dream that I never want to end, so I sit in contentment, panting the best sort of exhaustion. I have these butterflies that keep fluttering deep inside of my tummy, and it’s good, really good, but it still scares the shit out of me. So I’m curled up at 12:46 am listening to crickets and tree frogs and thoughts in my mind that are so loud I’d even take slithering snakes over some of these.
Work is hard. It’s deep and overwhelming and fulfilling and sad and exciting and so much more that I don’t even know where to start. And so I place one hand on my beating heart and beg it to slow down. I move my fingers over my eyes that are finally crying tears as I deal with a life I didn’t see coming, as I fight the good kinds of fear that my year of adventure in the chance and unknowns is bringing. Because I’ve wanted this and didn’t know just how badly I did. And somehow God’s answers though true and right, they’re not at all what I expected. And the goosebumps that still linger after a day full of vulnerability and fear give me peace and surprisingly, more trust. The innocent voice that spoke deeply to my devoted heart, “Miss Paullin, Miss Paullin,” gives me assurance. And the mentors that call me their “new favorite person” give me inspiration. The plane tickets that read my name and his, give me excitement…and the dates on the calendar that bring me to my girls are giving me support even before I am able to feel their arms holding me…
there are new things to get used to:
- voices that say, “Hi, Miss Paullin…”
- wearing heels for 7.5+ hours because the other voices will indeed say, “Did you see Miss Paullin’s shoes today?!”
- little hands begging to hold mine
- trusting eyes looking for love that I pray I’m somewhat good enough to give
- Making lunch the night before
- Picking out which shoes to wear…the night before.
- Blow drying my hair… the night before.
- kissing him…the night before….and maybe also the night after.
- fear that doesn’t chase me away
- fear that slows me down
- fear that teaches me to breathe
- fear that insists on carrying me home…
…and wasn’t there something in the mid-nineties about no fear?
but I’m sort of liking it…I like those voices in the lunchroom that are so loud I can’t hear myself think. And I like that I heard about my shoes 4 times today..and I liked those little hands that had me tying shoes, and eyes that lit up when they heard me speak a 6 year old equivalent of “foreign language.” And unfortunately, I’m so disgusted and embarrassed to say that I really did like my lunch of doritos and diet coke. I sort of liked the fact that I ran late, because the shoes that got 4 compliments were exactly the right ones. and I like that the kiss tonight was even better because there actually wasn’t one last night.
And the fear, it says, “Nic, just wait here. Stop being the you that keeps you back there and be the you that moves you over here…breathe through that dream that’s just made you numb…and wait. just wait; I’ll carry you home.”