When I went to the Philippines for the first time I was a little intimidated.
I was headed to a country that I knew nothing about, where I didn't fit in (literally they have tiny transportation and one little boy asked me, "Are you a giant woman?"), with people I didn't know that well.
One of my friends wrote me a letter for the airplane and her understanding calmed my nerves. She had recently gone on a trip to Haiti and said that while yes, she was in Haiti, she was just living life there...she was living life in Haiti, just like I'd be living life in the Philippines.
And honest to goodness that's really how it felt. Sometimes I would walk down the city streets and forget that I was halfway around the world. I still had the same struggles (compounded a bit by the lack of toilet seats, freezing cold showers, and giant cockroaches), just in a different country.
I'm at a place in my life where I just want to go somewhere new, somewhere different and I need to remind myself that wherever I go I'll still be living my life there. Things would be different, sure, but I wouldn't escape all my problems because well, there is no escaping myself.
Which means one thing: patience.
I've been realizing that patience really is a virtue, one I find I lack more and more. Patience, waiting for God's call instead of making my own, is the key to success (and an unfortunate reality for a planner like myself).
But, I think that patience leads to contentment. Not contentment that dwells in apathy, but a fiery contentment that's filled with peace and motivation and trust. It's a patience I look forward to.