Posted in Fitness, Volleyball, & Motivation, Life Abroad

‘Tis the Season

Friends and Family,

It’s been entirely too long. The last time I wrote a blog it was beautiful and sunny outside, there were birds chirping (probably the ones living in my ceiling) and I was so excited about the new changes I had made to my blog site. Now as I write it is below negative each day with the ground covered in snow and I am still equally as excited about my beautiful new blog site. Boy how time has flown by the past few weeks ekk months. But the seasons outside aren’t the only ones to enjoy.

I’d love to say that the past two months have been so great causing me to be far too distracted with joy that I couldn’t share what has been going on. That would be a lie. It would actually be the opposite of the truth. The past few months have been a struggle for me but I’ve struggled less and less over time. I’ve never experienced anxiety and self-confidence issues like I have during the months of September and October. The worst part was that I was feeling these emotions towards volleyball, the one part of my life that has always been consistent. The one part of my life that has always come easy. The one part of my life that has been without a doubt my favorite thing to do in the world.

Recent conversations with a sweet friend of mine helped me realize that we need to do a better job enjoying the season of life that we are in and reminding others to do the same. Something that humans in general or maybe just me specifically struggle with is just that. When we are in HS we can’t wait to be independent and in college, when we are in college we can’t wait to be done with school—big mistake watch out for bills, when we are in the real world we are sad we are no longer in college constantly surrounded by friends, when we are single we can’t wait to be married, when we are married we wish we would’ve enjoyed our single life more or can’t wait to have babies, you catch my drift…

Through this conversation I realized that through all the anxiousness and doubts what I need to be doing is enjoying the season of life that I am in. I got so caught up with the results and my performance that I never even looked at the ball. The one thing that is important. Literally all I’ve wanted to do is play volleyball, it’s all I’ve ever known. Now that I am finally given the opportunity to do just that, play volleyball no strings attached, doubts crept into my mind telling me I was not good enough. What I challenge myself to do and others as well is to enjoy the season of life that we are in. How many more seasons will I get to play the sport that I love and call it my job? How much more time do you have in your current season of life no matter what that may be? I don’t know about you but I want to enjoy the season I’m in now and throw the worries out of the window. Long gone are the days of stressing over my worth, the future, or the results. Whether it be about your age, work status, martial status, baby status I urge you to enjoy exactly where you are because where you are is where you are supposed to be. 

Despite the struggles I’ve had on the court, there have still been some hygge times going on in bits and pieces. Our team is now 3-2 in the league sitting tied for fourth. We want to be within the top four of the league come Christmas time so that we get to compete in the Grand Prix Volleyball Tournament in January. We play the teams currently sitting in number 1 and number 2 within the next few weeks so wish us some luck!

My grad school work is so close yet so so so so so far from being over. As I’ve mentioned I’m on my final capstone course and the finish line is near (Dec. 4) the only things standing in my way are a 50 page paper, a 15-20 page paper, and a 1 hour phone conversation about why I should pass featuring a slideshow. Oh my goodness finding the motivation to get all of that done is so tough but knowing I won’t EVER have to do homework again really helps. Seriously, if I ever mention starting any type of education again please tell me not to and starting Dec. 4th I will only answer to Master IJ. 

I’ve continued to enjoy getting to know my village people aka teammates over the past few months. One of the later additions to our team, Nette aka Nette Peit an Estonian outside, has an affinity for shrieking from time to time in practice when a ball doesn’t go quite her way. Literally the funniest thing ever. I’m talking, she thinks the ball is out, but then it ends up being super close and falling in, and as this process is happening in her mind all she can manage to do is scream at the top of her lungs at the horrible misjudgment she’s made. Thinking about it makes me laugh out loud and I’m really hoping we get one of these incidents on film. The world deserves to experience it first hand.

I also got to spend Election Day with two of the girls from the village up North Emilia & Rebecca aka CC aka Magic Hands aka Michael. Side Note: did everyone know the Arctic Circle was a real thing and people live above it????? Just a little fun fact these girls taught me that was an absolutely mind blowing revelation. Anyways, the late evening (around 11pm to 4am) was filled with fika aka Swedish snack time, hot chocolate, Swedish news, CNN, and some tasty glögg. The only disappointing part of the evening was the result of the election. Living overseas it really sucks to be judged by the decisions of “your” nation which technically isn’t “my” nation as a naturalized immigrant, right Trump? Today I am equally as confused as when this whole Trump running thing became a thing. I wish I had words of wisdom to share but really I’m speechless on the matter but hoping for unity and for the best whatever that may look like.

Lastly, I have exciting travel updates as I’ve booked my next adventure to the Ancient City of Rome! I’m SO excited to get to go not only because it’s freaking Rome but also because I’ll be going with Topher Grace. It’s our first trip together and from my previous experience traveling with someone, no matter who that person may be to you, helps you get to know them so much more. For example I learned that with Ricky Bobby we need to take a nap each day to function. Considering he is as into ice cream as I am I think the trip will be a complete success.

Here is to enjoying the season we’re in which will soon include stuffing our faces with some turkey!

Ever Wanderlusting,

IJ

P.S. A little something to make you laugh, I got hit in the face not once but twice in our previous game. That brings my total up to 3 times for getting hit in the face, the first of which was my freshman year of volleyball. Oh the joys of the sport I love.

 

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