15 days stand between me and the morning that I, along with a close friend, tightly pack ourselves into my 1999 Buick LeSabre leave the comforts of Columbus, OH and begin my journey that ends in Berkeley California.
Two weeks? No way. These five years of Ohio that have culminated into this two weeks seems quite unreal. I write these words, shocked that I will no longer be able to grab a delicious hot dog at Dirty Franks, my all-time favorite restaurant in Columbus, or indulge in the unique and amazing Jeni's Ice cream. I will not walk the streets of Bexley and run into children that I know and love because I meet most of Bexley's children while working at the Jewish Community Center Daycare. I can't venture to German Village for a walk in Schiller Park and then comb over the books in the 32 rooms of the maze that is the Book Loft. These places hold so many memories for me.
Last night, I had a going away get together at the fountains of Capital University. It was fitting to say goodbye to dear friends at the place where we frollicked as students (Alright, maybe only I frollicked on campus but it was always to the amusement of a friend walking with me). Capital University and Columbus have been a place where I blossomed into the confident leader that I am today. The late nights, the numerous executive board meetings of groups I was in, the early morning studying, the hours spent in my fraternity's room, the laughs over cheap beer at the local bar Liepzig Haus; I adore Capital University for challenging me to be an intellectual and compassionate leader.
I've been glad to be able to be back in Columbus to fall into the place of Capital alumni while being so close to campus. More importantly, I am overjoyed for the extra time I have had to be with my family members and friends here in Columbus. College is a crazy whirlwind and I am glad to have had time to relax here in Columbus while working in a job that I adore.
Working as a daycare teacher has been a beautiful experience and I could not ever trade my memories of the Ladybug Room for anything. The twelve children that I have been able to love and teach are cemented in my hearts forever as their infant selves. I so wish that I could stay here and watch them grow up and continue to be their teacher for life. But not everyone can be Mr. Feeny from Boy Meets World. :) I leave these children here knowing that I love them with all of my heart and that the love I gave them will stay with them forever.
As you can tell, leaving Ohio is going to be a challenging experience for me. I have a great life here that I enjoy and wonderful people that surround me with love and kindness. When I pray to God, I often hear back that there is much more in store for me. These wonderful experiences that I have here are just the beginning of a great journey. I am more than happy to heed the call to seminary.
The only thing that I can imagine will make me happy in life is to support others in their emotional and spiritual lives. God gave me gifts of hospitality and compassion and the ability to connect with others in ways that I never thought imaginable. I am thrilled to see what else God has in store for me.
As someone who loves to be a support for other people, it can be hard to let other people support me. I am very happy that though I try to be self-sufficient, I will never be able to support myself the way that my loved ones do. I started typing out each of the peoples names of people who have held me through my discernment these past years, but I've decided that the list would go on for much too long. :)
I am overwhelmed
with humbleness by the kindness of congregations and individuals who
have donated to help me be able to make the road trip from Columbus to
Berkeley! I have to laugh whenever I am surprised when people support me emotionally, financially, or mentally. My aunt wisely told me this a few weeks ago: "Well, isn't that what you would have done for them?" Still, I am grateful for the love and kindness that people pour into me.
There is so much more to share and talk about, but I fear that this post is quite long already! Thank you for reading.