Saturday, March 17, 2012

Some Beautiful Things

This is in (mostly) list format. I should be in bed, got a long day tomorrow as I'll be traveling to Washington, D.C. with about 30 other students from Tyson House for the annual spring break pilgrimage. I'm excited! Hopefully I'll post about it when I get home.

Some things from this past week:

- I was trying to read the Communist Manifesto for history class, but there were way too many distractions pulling me away from an already boring/tedious homework assignment. First, the building has yet to switch from heat to air conditioning (and/or my roommate and I just haven't bothered to mess with the thermostat). Second, I sat on my bed with the window open, admiring the sunset instead of words on a page when all of a sudden every bird in the courtyard (and dare I say, the entire neighborhood!) started a-chirping away! I literally stopped what I was doing and just sat in complete stillness with my mouth slightly agape. It was a beautiful melody, a beautiful reminder of God's awesomeness.

- I went to a rather nice, fancy restaurant with some dear friends who also happen to be non-biological family. It was awesome, but I won't lie when I say that I felt a bit out of place, especially when I dropped food on my lap not once, but twice. The point of that was really, I think, that in my slight uncomfortableness, I'm discovering more and more of who I am and what makes me feel most at peace. Which is a beautiful thing.

- Also, it started to storm, quite heavily, right before we left. I wore the wrong shoes to walk in puddles, so I did what I do best...walked to the car in a thunderstorm, barefoot, holding my shoes in my hand. Beautiful.

- The same night, I walked from my car to the apartment barefoot, shoes in hand. Best feeling in the world stepping over the uneven brick courtyard and sloshing through puddles, climbing up stairs with bits of whatever clinging to my feet. I ran into my roommate in the stairwell. She too was barefoot and holding her shoes. We smiled and laughed at each other. This scene was comically beautiful.

- For the last two weeks, I was able to take care of some horses, more so than my usual shift at the barn. It was a special circumstance with Horse Haven, an influx of more than 30 horses. So much so that we didn't have enough room at our actual facility, so the local fairground/park/thing let us stay there for awhile. I didn't work nearly as many hours as a few other individuals did, but man, am I pooped. But man, was it worth for every hour, every dirty barn booger, for crusty/dusty orange/brown hands at the end of the night...and no amount of washing could make the dirt go away. Smelling like a barn, horses, and hay and feeling tired because of hard work...beautiful.

- I'm dealing with post-concert blues. I'll be okay. It still blows my mind that one of my biggest, happiest dreams came true. Awesomely beautiful.

- Because of Mumford & Sons, I've discovered new music. I'm talking, wicked cool stuff. Ben Lovett, the keys/accordion player, co-founded a live music night called Communion in London in 2006 which has since grown to include more cities as well as a record label. Because of Communion's blog and because of the artists signed to the label, I've discovered so much more music that makes me happy. Beautiful.

So today/tonight/this morning's word of the day = beautiful.

Peace.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Finding Integrity

Not that I didn't have integrity before Monday morning...but I was reminded of what it feels like.

I checked my grades Sunday evening and discovered that my Spanish midterm was added, and I astonishingly made a 97. For about 5 seconds, I was super excited, but then I convinced myself that the grade was a falsehood. But, I shared in my excitement with others and thought nothing of it until I walked into class Monday morning...

My professor handed back the exams, and in reality, I actually made an 87! The blow wasn't crushing, since I had prepared myself. After class, I slowly walked up to her and said that my grade was entered incorrectly. I gushed my revelation and quickly followed it up with, "I didn't want to tell you, but I knew that I had to..."

She smiled and said thank you. A few hours later, my grade reflected reality.

I'm still doing well in the class, even with losing 10 points that were never mine.

I told Fr. David that over dinner, and after I stopped squirming in my chair out of sheer whateverness (I had sunk rather low, so low that my face rested on the dinner table), I told him that I wasn't sure how I felt about the whole thing.

He said, well, that's integrity. And you have it.

I know that the brief sentence seems rather simple, but to me, the concept was far from simple. It took a dear friend and excellent shepherd to point that out to me.

Integrity...it feels weird to remember it, but it feels good.

Also, this has nothing to do with integrity, but I went to see Mumford & Sons last week (finally! a dream come true, to say the least), and here's a new song for ya. Conveniently filmed at the night of my show, which makes this video find doubly cool.

"Ghosts That We Knew" - Mumford & Sons