I don’t know about you, reader, but I find that my life can change drastically in the course of a year. Actually, it can change in much shorter courses than that.
I’ve been burning the candle at both ends (or so it feels) for something like a week – I worked last Monday, babysat in Berea on Tuesday, and worked Wednesday-Saturday (for the sake of frugality and practicality, namely saving money on gas, I stayed in respective cities for extended periods of time. For example, I stayed in Berea after life group, so I was in Berea from 5:40 AM until about midnight. I stayed with my sister in Lexington Wednesday and Thursday nights to save the commute to work since I worked early.) Sunday, as per usual, hardly feels like a day off, as I spend it practicing for the worship team and sometimes, like this past Sunday, teaching Sunday school. I worked yesterday morning and finally find myself on a Tuesday, which means no work.
I’ve not written for a long time now, and I was searching for what exactly to write about, as my head was swimming with a million different ideas. I realized that the constant had been change (ironically) among all the things I’d been thinking about, so I’ll go forward with it…
A year ago today, I was newly employed at Purdy’s Coffee Co. in Richmond, KY. It was my second coffee-related job, and my first experience working for a small business. I loved it, and that job was heaven for the first little while. I felt that I enjoyed an unprecedented degree of freedom and autonomy to create drinks, try my own, wear whatever clothes (while still remaining modest and appropriate) at work that I wanted, I loved working with my bosses, loved the customers, etc. It was especially great because they worked with my school schedule. It was my senior year of college, and I’d tailored a schedule for while I was still at Starbucks so that I could work 5:00-9:45 every day. The job came about rather suddenly and I didn’t think to remake my schedule for a later-opening coffee shop (unfortunately for me, Purdy’s didn’t open until 7 AM) so we had to work with smaller chunks of times, which meant sometimes in order to get the necessary hours, I had to open and close in the same day, returning after class.
I had my friends I met with to study at various places – and I was a really good student (as far as studying, anyway; I don’t think “studier” is the right word, is it?) so I got the chance to help my friends study for tough exams while myself preparing for them.
(I confess that, at this point, I don’t remember much more, as I am going off my journal to remember exactly what was going on. One thing you younger readers may not yet understand is that as you grow older and your life experiences add up, it’s harder to remember when one thing ended and another began. But with time, you’ll learn that, you may only not remember when.)
Fast forward to today. I am still dealing in coffee (since caffeine is a legal drug, then I am, by definition, a professional drug dealer) working at A Cup of Common Wealth in Lexington, KY. I’m so blessed by it – first by how I got the job which was, again, through their own initiative (as in, they asked me if I’d like to work with them) but also by the nature of the job itself. It occasionally requires long hours, lots of them early (to open, we arrive at 5:30 AM, and to close, we leave at or after 10:00 PM, not to mention commuting to and from Richmond, which is 30-40 minutes) but to make those hours workable, we are blessed with coffee on the job, and an incredible community of people in which few (if any) people are expecting a rushed experience associated with the get-them-in, get-them-out mentality our culture practices. Instead, it’s a place of genuine hellos, how-are-yous and high fives. Employees have fun together, customers have fun together, and employees and customers have fun together. It’s a unique job, unlike any I’ve ever had. While I anticipated hating working in Lexington, it turns out that the commute is easy (though admittedly it gets costly) and I often times lament the fact that I am not a part of the actual community in the sense that I don’t live there.
Compound that with the fact that when you’re a fresh graduate, everyone’s asking you what the future holds. Here’s the answer:
I don’t know.
A part of me loves where I am now and wishes everything could stay the same. I’ve got a fun job, I’ve got great friends, I’m young and I have tons of energy, I do a lot of things I enjoy and I enjoy a lot of the things I do, and I wish it could stay the same.
But that’s just it, isn’t it?
More and more, I’m realizing that life happens in seasons. It is a good thing to enjoy things – I feel as though I’m slowly drinking in every bit of the current season, and each sip is as sweet as the last. But eventually things will change. I won’t always have great bosses or great co-workers. I won’t always be able to drive my younger siblings home from soccer games and buy a pizza for dinner. I won’t always enjoy having a phone that is rarely if ever called. I won’t always enjoy free time in the afternoon to go for a run. I may not even always enjoy having all my time to myself to do whatever I want!
At risk of sounding like a humanist, I’ll say this: enjoy your life. Those little things you find that are (metaphorically, but not excluding this literally) like cold water on a hot day – those things you just feel you could drink in: do it (presuming they’re not sinful)! My second-to-last blog was about this, but I write this presently because I realize that some things are seasonal. Few (if any) things last forever. Some of the things we enjoy are things we can only enjoy for a time, for a season. By the grace of God, learn to embrace the season you’re in—the good and the bad—and enjoy it for what it is before seasons transition again.