Such sweet encouragement has rolled my way this week. I’m so thankful for all of my e-mailers, facebook massagers and blog messengers. It is so nice to feel so cared for! Additionally, I am quite excited to know that people are actually reading my blog.
I experienced a day or two of anxiety and frustration and thought it might be better to wait until the storm had passed before writing again. I feel so blessed to be here and am absolutely loving my experience and I didn’t want a bad day to result in a negative blog post. I have made a conscious effort to choose joy!!
All of that to say, joy really does come in the morning. I awoke this morning to a sense of peace and comfort and had a fantastic day. (I’m sure the fact that it is Friday didn’t hurt the situation either!)
So, I waited to tell you about the past few days until I reached a point where I could tell them more as narration as I was able to see God’s grace through them! I am proud to say that I am at that point.
In a nut shell.. Its been as low as negative 8 and I’ve been staying an a flat that has two tiny space heaters, excuse me… metal panels that heat up, but DO NOT radiate heat. Waking up at 5:15 (always to a very sweet wake-up call I might add), traveling an hour and a half, a first week of work at a CRAZY job (I was given cases and did a home visit my first day… still haven’t gotten any training so I don’t have clue what I am doing… hit the ground running has a whole new meaning), back on the train fighting rush hour for an hour and forty five minutes (switching between the rail and two tube lines) and then a frigid walk home… getting in the door around 7 or 7:30 and SURPRISE… FREEZING!!! However, all of that was fine… it was realizing that I have to pay 199 pounds (almost three hundred dollars) a month to commute to work (and that only gets me to work, no where else) in addition to a mile and a half walk each way (which should do me good as they eat buscuits, aka: cookies, all day long in the office)… and having to pay what seems like a batrillion pounds anytime I want to travel anywhere else that really put me over the edge.
As I said, the above is just to catch you up on the past few days as all situations have resided and I am joyful again. I’ve decided that I have a complete peace about where I am staying and my low cost of living, despite the expensive transportation costs, actually leaves me better in the end. Additionally, I love walking and I am thankful for the opportunity to start my day in the fresh air, taking in the beauty around me and getting lots of great exercise in the process. Nothing like a workout that you have to do every day!! I’m excited. I’ve met one of my roommates as well (Oliver/Ollie) and he was very nice (I am living in a co-ed house. I was hoping to get an all female room-share, but I’ve come to realize that 99.99999999999999999 percent of housing here in terms of house shares are co-ed. I suppose I’ll get to experience what it would be like if I had a brother.) All is going to be good. SO, I am VERY Excited to move into my new home tomorrow (and praying they keep the heat REALLY high). If not, however, several of the Americans at work, who are also FREEZING here, recommending paying 5 pounds and getting a stuffed animal that is stuffed with a water bottle. You fill the water bottle up with scalding water from the tea kettle and snuggle with it. I snuggled up with Sir Reginald of Romford (area I work in and purchased him in) last night and slept like a baby! Much warmer!!! ☺
So, housing… very excited! Warmth… yeah for stuffed tigers!! And… work… four days in and I’m finally getting the hang of things. Additionally, I could not ask for better co-workers, including the former Nancy Negative. While she did tell me to quite being so happy and joyful this morning, we had lunch together and engaged in a really great conversation about her life. Having opened up with me it really changed things and she is much more positive now. Almost as if now that I know how awful her life was at points she doesn’t need to constantly tell me and we can move on. It was nice that she felt comfortable to share with me so openly. So, yeah for great co-workers!! There are several other REALLY sweet girls in the office too!! I’m very excited about that, all whom were very concerned for me with regard to my housing and jumped right in to help me look for another place to stay. Also, Mae, my friend that started in another department the same day that I did, also from the U.S. was headed into London this evening to meet a friend. She invited me to the pub for a drink with them! While not much of a pub/bar girl, I’ve resided myself to the fact that having a drink after work is more of a social experience and so I willingly tagged along. Sorry to disappoint, but I couldn’t bring myself to order a beer. GROSS!! At some point I’d like to try one, just to say I have. But I’d like to wait for a time when I am a little more financially set before I blow money on a half-pint knowing I wont make it past one sip. Apparently, the beer here is much smoother, and Guinness has a widget, a small ball of nitrogen, in it that enters the can when you open it and makes it taste better. Also, most people order ½ Guinness and ½ black currant (a fruit something or other I think). So, while I failed to take on the full pub experience, I did have a great time hanging out with Mae and her friend from Boulder, CO.
I’m so excited to be here and for all of the experiences that I am having and the friends that I am meeting. A few prayer requests…
1. That I might continue to build deeper relationships with those that I have met as well as other great relationship with those I have yet to meet.
2. I don’t know much about my roommates (Leena, Olie and Leena’s boyfriend)… please pray that things go well in all regards.
3. A combination of stress, bad eating (lots of peanut butter and banana sandwiches) and the weather, I am experiencing a lot of “spondo” related pain. The good news is that I am much less stressed, I should be able to go grocery shopping and have access to an actual kitchen tomorrow, and it is apparently getting warmer. So, things are looking up!!! However, I would love prayers for increased mobility and less consistent pain.
Happily a Chelmsford resident,