oh baby, baby it's a wild world

I never thought I would be here, writing this post. I have imagined writing it, as silly as that sounds, in my head a million times. What would it be like to write that blessed blog post about me landing my dream job, in my field, working for a cause close to my heart?

I'm getting ahead of myself, aren't I? Let me start at the beginning.

In December, a person I love greatly left after a two week visit to head back to work on the New Zealand Cricket Tour. I had just returned from 4 1/2 months traveling the world, 6 months if you count the domestic trips before that. So there I was- unemployed with the worst post-travel blues,  just trying to find somewhere I could go that felt familiar. South Carolina was wonderful, but after constant movement, living out of a backpack, and a ton of New-Zealand-visa-rejection-induced heartbreak {NZVRIH, as I affectionately call it}, I wanted to be somewhere that I knew like the back of my hand.

Up to Montana I went in January, with my mother's second vehicle {mine had been sold in hopes I would be living in New Zealand permanently} and a positive attitude, if not a little stressed at the task of moving across the country sans Poppy. I crashed on my friend's {more like second sister's} couch and got a job at my old university. It wasn't my dream job, but I just wanted something with good health benefits that paid a salary I could live on so that I could find my feet back on the ground. Being in Montana allowed me to be in familiar territory. It also allowed me to be around some of my friends in a place where a hike is always on the itinerary. Montana has been great, but it has also seen its challenges.

Without going into too much detail, I took a bit of a hit on the health front. April came and my body threw me for a loop. Good doctors took care of me, but the recovery process was harder than I was prepared for. During this time, when I was in pain physically and dealing with the mental weakening that comes with not being able to run {which, for me, is something so integral to my well-being}, I suddenly didn't want to be in this familiar anymore. I wanted my dog. I wanted my island. I wanted to be doing something I was passionate about. That was the familiar I wanted and so sorely needed.

I missed the version of myself I found all those years ago in New Zealand that I fought so hard to polish every where I found myself along the way that I felt fully realized in Laos. That girl in Laos, I tell ya. She was it-- full of fire and passion and more purpose. 

And so then, in the most serendipitous moment of my existence, apart from that time I met a certain someone in a certain hallway, there was an opening. My dream job. A chance to work with the rescued girls who so changed my understanding of the world. A chance to go back to Laos and live there while I helped empower those who make up a majority of the world's population but receive inferior healthcare, unequal access to education, and limited resources. Snagging the job was an absolute long shot, but-- why the hell not?

I applied. I interviewed. I waited. I managed to wait for a whole week, but I honestly thought it would just never happen. That it was not my turn to be put in the game and that I'd ride the bench a little longer. I've never been one for patience or waiting or riding the bench. I'm a ball player, ya dig? Meant to be out on the field, swinging away. But, for this, I would wait happily until it was my turn at the bat.

The week passed and I casually checked my e-mails without preparing for anything of real significance. That's when I got called to play the game.

I have been offered the position of Women's Empowerment Project Coordinator in Luang Prabang, Laos starting in July. Me. Can you even believe it? Sometimes, the Universe pulls some kind of absolute magic out of the air.

This has altered my plans for my return to the old stomping grounds in England, Wales, Ireland, and my stopover in Iceland. And, yes, that part of it breaks my heart. There are loved ones I always want to see, but this is my opportunity. This is my dream, and my family and friends have been so supportive. Plus, this means they will have to visit me in Laos-- or as I will be calling it, home.

I never thought I would be here, writing this post. But here I am. I am writing it. And everything has come full circle.

Oh baby, baby, it's a wild world. But what a lovely sort of wild it is.