This past week I had my freshman students write a Personal Portfolio, filling it with different entries telling me (and themselves) about who they are as freshman in high school. I figure that with a semester under their belts, they have more of an understanding of who "being me" really is.
I find it very interesting, in retrospect, how I was in high school, and how the "me" in high school has shaped who I am today. Sometimes it is hard to remember the Lisa who was a freshman in high school, getting lost (whether it be in the halls or in the eyes of the dreamy sophomore in my civics class - who by the way still ranks as one of the cutest guys I've ever held hands with (yay for praying during youth group!!).
I was so worried about the impression that I gave to other people. I was so shy and quiet. Wouldn't it be interesting to go back and live (just for a day) as you felt as a freshman? It makes me sad to think how much fear I had. I had to worry about wearing the right outfit, saying the right thing, sitting with the right people at lunch, eating the "cool thing" for lunch (which unfortunatly turned out to be pizza hut pizza and french fries - how gross is that!).
I know that if I had the chance to go back and change myself I wouldn't be the me that I am today (and I am pretty partial to myself). I also know, however, how many others are as scared as I was and that makes me sad.
We are diamonds in the ruff!! We need to let ourselves shine!!
I know that it is past the new year but it is technically still Christmas (as today is when the US Church celebrates Epiphany – what is up with us changing the 12 days of Christmas to 14?). So, here is my up to the minute recap of 2005. As Kristi names the seasons and they (unfortunately or not) usually have a pretty good idea of how my life goes, I am going to go through the year in that way.
The Winter of Anticipation ~ I started off the year spending some quality time with my sister. She came down for her now-annual Christmas visit. Teri rocks my face off. My best friends joined my on the March for Life. It was one of the most spiritual March trips of my life. We got to have a private mass in the crypt of the Basilica the day after the March. Besides an amazing homily from Father Jarrod, our voices filled the air of the basement with some of the most amazing acoustics I have ever heard. The trip started off my God high that lasted for the next six months.
It’s like God cradled me in his arms last winter and said, "Just wait, Lisa, keep anticipating – I have some amazing things planned for you!" All I can say to that is, "Wow." We got back and two days later I got to go to my student’s sophomore retreat. FJ talked about how they need to be like Dory and "just keep swimming" through all the crud that we have to deal with. The weekend we got back from the March for Life, I attended the Sojourn retreat for Young Adults in the diocese. I didn’t want to go but was blessed not only with some amazing friendships, but with some amazing graces as well. Father concentrated on the 1st chapter of the Song of Songs and how much God intimately wants to know and love us.
Talking about "God Highs," I got to go to the National Catholic Singles Conference which did not turn out to be the meat market as feared, but a spiritually enriching and educational weekend. When we got back, Kristi and I finally had our first weekend off for the year. And what a weekend that turned out to be. I think it was 5 couples that formed that weekend, me included . . . yes, yes, little Lisa got her first taste of love.
The Spring of New Beginnings ~
There were many beginnings last Spring. During Lent we had our first ever God Squad: 90 of our students gave up there mornings and showed up at school at 6:50 every morning for morning prayer, Mass and Ignatian meditations. God was taking me and holding me very close to his heart. My boyfriend was also my co-assistant coach and I felt like life was not as Lent should be, all somber, but a sweet celebration of God’s love for me being manifest throughout every part of my life.
It was as if He was giving me a new beginning in so many senses. An amazing prayer life, a new and sweet love, a house continually growing in people: life was good. My 25th birthday came with a bang. Our house was bombarded by my family and friends. I received my first dozen roses from a boy (along with some amazing presents) and got to spend the day in a private mass, watching movies and cuddling, and then chilling with my high school girls group, the Angels of the Holy Queen that night. The spring also brought my first date to Prom – and for the first time Prom was fun!
The Summer of Clarity ~
I think a better name for the summer would be "The one where Lisa was home for a total of three days," well, just in June. I went to the Steubenville YA Conference, met some amazing people and got a little more God stuff- ah the Praise and Worship! When I got back I left for the boyfriend’s parents house and learned one thing . . . a week is too long! I got to learn a little bit of Spanish, be a part of an amazing and loving family and be a little overwhelmed. When I got back, I left for the HS Steubenville, followed by a trip to Iowa to be a bridesmaid in Manda’s wedding (which was a blast – I’m so glad Matt was there to be my fellow BCer in the wedding party!).
It was during the rest of the summer was a bit of the clarity set in. Jose and I took a break and then decided that God was not calling us to be dating. I called it Lisa’s week of tears 2005 and was not all about the summer of clarity.
The summer ended with an extra special visit from a poppa – the Bishop of Wichita came for dinner and rosary (along with 70 others). It was amazing to see our house literally bursting at the seams with great Catholics.
The Fall of Contentment ~
This is the one that’s kind of weird. The fall was an interesting time and possibly too close for retrospection. It did, however, bring a level of contentment. The ex-boyfriend is now back to being one of my best friends and Kristi, my roommate (one of the 5 couples) is now engaged. Kristi is back to being home a lot more and life was good.
Now it is the Winter of Trust and I don’t really know what is going to happen with life. Kristi gets married in May and the Daisy House is a little up in the air. I thought about moving overseas to teach for the Department of Defense. At the moment, however, God is saying once again, "Trust me Lisa, I have amazing plans for you." I guess I’ll have to wait to see what 2006 brings!
I don't think we use the phrase non-the-less with enough frequency. It is such a fun phrase and yet hardly ever gets used.
I haven't blogged in forever and this makes me sad. I think I haven't blogged because I don't know what to think about things. My last post was posted in confusion and that confusion is still there. One of my roommates is getting married and I don't know what will happen to my house in four months. I don't know if I am going to leave Wichita or stay here. I don't know a lot of things. That is the reason for this "non-post." I can't really update because there is no update. I can't inform because there is no news. I can't think of any more allegories or whatever they are called so I'm going to stop posting!
- on the plus side, I think this semester is going to go really well. I flipped the chairs in my room to face the side wall instead of the back wall and it promises to be a fun arrangement. Plus, all the girls in my 4th hr are going gaga over the new guy at school - ah to be in high school again!!:)