“I’m not sure what I’ll do, but-well, I want to go places and see people. I want my mind to grow. I want to live where things happen on a big scale” -F. Scott Fitzgerald.
F. Scott Fitzgerald and I would have enjoyed each other’s company. We would have agreed on many things, passionately debated on certain topics and spent hours talking about life, travel, relationships, love, and literature among many other things while drinking copious amounts of alcohol into the late hours of the night. We share a similar world view. In many ways, I feel as though F. Scott Firzgerald would have understood my soul.
Yesterday I graduated with my BA in Outdoor Leadership. It has been a long time coming. I left high school in ‘05 and did a 1 year outdoor discipleship Christian studies certificate in Huntsville Ontario, then moved to Lennoxville Quebec where I lived for the next 4 years studying Creative Arts in college then attending Bishop’s University for business. in 2010 I felt God was calling me to a different sort of life and I faithfully moved across the country right after spending the summer in the Philippines to attend Columbia Bible College. I spent 3 incredibly formative years here at CBC where I learned all about the outdoors, Anabaptist theology, Mennonite culture, community, relationships, leadership, and soooo much more… I wanted a foundation on God to prepare me for a lifetime of ministry and thats exactly what I got.
I know my time as a student is not over. I want to pursue a masters in International Peace and Conflict Resolution as well as a Masters of Arts in Theological Studies. I love to learn and I’m excited for that next chapter in my life, but I’m not there yet. Right now im in the in-between stage. Finished one milestone, eagerly anticipating the next one, but content in this tention-filled state I’m in. I’m not sure exactly what I’ll be doing next. Right now I know im flying to Cabe Breton Nova Scotia in a couple days to be an administrative assistant at an orthodontist office-definitely not something I planned or aspired to do but I think this is the right place for me for this time of transition. I have the next 3 months planned and thats ok for me right now.
I just had an incredible year filled with growth and development, exhaustion, joy, mistakes, and triumphs. I’m ready for a break. Im ready to debrief this past year as a senior, as a leader, as the President of Student Council, as a roommate, friend, peer and student. I’m ready to do some M&E work on myself. Its gonna be a good summer. Im not sure what Im doing next or where I’ll be. A friend asked me today if I was gonna be back in Abbotsford in the fall and I said “ya thats my plan… but I could also end up in South Sudan”…in other words, the world is my oyster and I’m open to all its possibilities.
I have learned with my life to always be open to change, transition, and be ready for the unexpected. Like F.Scott Fitzgerald said, I’m not sure what I’ll do, but-well, I want to go places and see people. I want my mind to grow. I want to live where things happen on a big scale.
This is my ultimate dream in life. I remember being a kid in elementary school and telling my friends I wanted to grow up to be a person who was always willing and ready to learn. I want to travel and meet people and change the world and be a part of something. Isn’t that what we all hope for inside? I think as humans we all long to be a part of something bigger than ourselves, to be involved in a great story. God has written a beautiful story for you and I and its up to us to live it out. People who know me well laugh at me and say “what does Michelle want to do this week?” or “oh that was last month’s career ambition” and they’re right… I say I want to do just about everything. There is no denying that. I find all sorts of things in life so fascinating. We grow up being taught that we can be anything we want in life. We pick things like fire-fighter, school teacher, doctor, nurse, vet, astronaut… we are told of the glorious possibilities in life that await us when we grow up. Well I’m growing up now and I see all these incredible possibilities and want to be a part of so much. I think I will be the kind of person who will experience much in life. Its not really the norm and many people don’t understand it or want to be a part of it… but im learning to be ok with that.
I have been blessed in my life to be able to experience so much already and I look forward to the next 60 years of learning, traveling, and being a part of big things. Its a good life.