Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Rings of Glory, Sands of Silver

It's strange to think that I've not written in this blog in almost three months. I suppose I've had alot going on, what with graduating, and ... yeah, that's about all the excitement. Let's attempt to recap, in a decorative and highly charming manner.

Worldviews brought me to an amazing place in my life. By the end of the semester, I felt so close to those previous dumbasses in my class, and on my final exam, when I was asked the question "what impacted you the most about this class?"-- my answer was the dude who actually annoyed me most. We'll call him Jimmy-Jimmy. He was super conservative, and I disagreed with him every class, and once or twice, he got frustrated and told me that I was exhausting. But I was SO challenged by him, and, in the end, when I looked past his worldview, and really tried to understand him, I realized what a solid, good man he is. It was such a revelation. The final paper for that class ended up being nigh on... 36 pages, I believe, and I cracked through so many of my heady, rational, fix-it-smartly-and-handle-it-without-emotion tendencies. I realized that, as my dad has told me a thousand times before, I shouldn't doubt in the dark what God showed me in the light. What is human intelligence and wisdom compared to the wisdom of God? Is that in the Bible? Don't even bother looking for it, you won't find it anywhere.

My thesis turned out to be the most important piece I'd ever written in my life. I didn't mean for it to be so important. I thought I would throw together something, in a decorative and highly charming manner. But on the beach in October, I realized that I wanted to tell one of the stories of my dear grandfather--and I wept as I trod through the waves, and went back and wrote the entire short story in three sittings. That story become an honored shrine of memory to one of the best men I've even known, and I'm unspeakably proud of what I did. The fact that it made a good thesis was immaterial; yay for me, I passed and graduated. But the real accomplishment was the reflection of my grandfather.

So I graduated. Summa Cum Laude. The college president complimented my "bling" as I shook his hand and took my diploma. I'd like to think he was commenting on my decorative and highly charming medals and honors cords and scholarship pins and such--yes, that was a blatant plug for my own awesomeness-- but, in truth--I think he noticed the dogtags I was wearing above everything else. As a retired Navy dude, Dr. Struble rocks the respect.
My family was kinda... really proud of me. I'm kinda...really proud of me. But it still hasn't completely sunken in yet, you know? Everyone tells me that I'll feel it for sure, once school starts in a few weeks and I'm not there. Sniff.

So, yeah. I'm thinkin'...grad school. I'm thinkin'...within the year. I'll give it time and thought and prayer and counsel amongst my lofty few (read: Da, Mum, Cait, Jeremy, and Andrew, pretty much), but I know for certain where God wants me--St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland. I'll basically spend two years reading Aristotle and trying to make sense of it. H-AMAZING. But, again, there is much to confer about. Applying, money, timing, moving, work, a place to live, etc. I'm working on my application, but I'm not making any definite plans til I can talk to Andrew. The fact is, yar, I am waiting for him. But the other fact is, I don't have to putter about in the same old job in the same old city whilst I wait. But the third fact is, I don't want to be in the middle of a semester when he gets out of the Army and have to say "Sorry, can't come road trip with you-- gotta discuss Proust."
Another fact: these are still all my mental brain-things inside my head. Andrew tends to have this nifty way of seeing a situation or idea, and finding this occam's razory answer that makes me feel both stupid and relieved. But he's very patient with my little acronym-forgetting peabrain, and that's one of the one-thousand-and-one Arabian reasons that I love him.

Speaking of which, he'll totally be here in about 29 days. I can't believe the first half of the deployment is almost over--so much has happened here, and so much has happened there. His unit has lost so many men. I've watched Andrew, albeit sporadically and from far away, go through the stages of grief. The denial phase was fun, before they lost anyone, and while it was still a bit of an adventure. The anger was hard, because he turned very inward and became annoyingly selfless (as in, he was telling us not to send him stuff or write so much, because it probably was so inconvenient for us...{what a dumbass}), and honestly, he was pretty uncommunicative. That was unbelievably difficult. That was when I found myself crying constantly, and questioning constantly--but thank God--that was also when I wrote my Worldviews paper and discovered (to my chagrin, I managed to weep about it in class) that I was doubting in the dark.

I think Andrew may be in the bargaining stage right now, the whole "just let me live until mid-tour, so I can see Chelsea and my family one more time" thing. Being as resilient as he is, he's pretty optimistic, I think. But also, his unit got pulled back to the big base, and they got to stop dying for awhile over Christmas. He's lost so many friends... I've also been agonizing about how to help him. It's been driving me half mad, because I feel so inadequate to fight against the monumental brutality of the things he's suffering. But as always, Mister God was right there, and in the middle of my agonizing, He said to me oh-so-gently, "Andrew was mine first. I will heal him. I love him more than you do, and I always care for those of My household. I will heal him."
So here I am. Counting down days, filled with plans that can't be settled yet, but still happy. I feel... like I've relearned how to trust, lately. It's a peaceful thing.


  1. Wow. That was a lot. But thanks. I'm glad you're back again. :)

  2. I totally commented on this yesterday, and it's not here. That makes me angry. Grr. Anyway, I said hurray for a post, something about me luurving you, and that the third photo from the bottom looks like Tom Roth. Oh, and I'm uber proud of you too. :)