Seasons are one of my favorite things about this life.
They come and go; sometimes earlier than you'd hope and other times not soon enough.
I can remember very vividly how long the summer seemed to last home in Florida. Endlessly, it would drag on and soon have you begging for just a hint of coolness that you could be sure wouldn't come until after Christmas or so. Just this year, it was 81°F (~27°C) on Christmas Day!
Here, in Portland, the seasons change much more often and with them, the only thing that doesn't change is the rain. For a girl who's used to the Florida sunshine and flash floods, I can't say it was something I was expecting to have to adjust to.
The rain in Oregon is different than the rain in Florida. It's lighter, but it lasts for months. It makes for trees the deepest shade of green, but that color takes time to manifest. It takes faith, patience, steadfastness, hope, and passing seasons.
The ride to this soul-growing city has been a wild one.
Six months ago, I started an adventure that I had expectations for. I expected to grow, to learn, to love, to feel, to see, to listen, to talk, to laugh, to cry, to experience.
What I didn't expect was that all of that growth would come through so much pain and such a long season of falling. Couch-surfing for four months, not knowing if I would eat that day, losing a friend, losing myself...
Oh, but the pure white snow brought new beginnings.
A new city - where I can grow and love and learn.
A new friend - in fact, plenty of new friends who took me in and fed me and loved me.
A new house - in my favorite part of my new favorite town.
A new job - as an event coordinator for a non-profit and as a nanny.
A new season - of faith and obedience and finding myself through the adventure that comes.
A new year.
God carefully planted me in a place full of sunshine and warmth for 20 years to grow a bright and gentle spirit within me. I can see now how much of North Florida is still a part of me from the golden tips of my hair to the Atlantic-strength waves of compassion in my heart.
After a long journey - and with a long journey ahead - I can see how much purpose God has in calling me to dig my roots into the Pacific Northwest soil.
Portland rain is the only thing that can grow me true and evergreen.
ever free, ever true, ever kind.