Twenty-Four

Where my footprints will go as a twenty- four year old…

I can’t help but to get the song 24 by Switchfoot stuck in my head, when I think of my birthday at the end of the month. I sit here this morning slightly overwhelmed in my thoughts of my year, 2015, thus far. The people I have been in contact with, just don’t know what to think of me when I tell some of the stories about my adventures I’ve had. My grandma said she was already married and had a child by my age. While we both agree, that is a great and magnificent adventure, but my life as a – almost – 24 year old has certainly allowed for more diverse adventures.

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So as I’m listening to this song I realize I am wrestling with questions.. how will God continue to use me with this beautiful life I have been given. Although I’m not ‘begging for a blessing or name,’ I am asking for clarity to be made of the world. ‘I want to see miracles, and see the world change,’ I want to help make this world a better place.

With all my symphonies in twenty four parts.

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A lot has happened in these 24 years, I triumphantly walked across two graduation stages, I felt loss in my community after natural disasters, I didn’t let my slight hearing loss get in the way of me being the best person I can be, I learned my strengths and weaknesses.

I know the smell of pride that washes over me when I drive over the Pensacola Bridge to my small salty hometown of Gulf Breeze, Florida. It’s in those peaceful moments while the sun sets over the water and the waves quietly lap up against the rocks, that I know I’m so unbelievably blessed.

I’ve seen Peruvian men and women out working in their potato farms walking with dignity, and pride through the muck and marsh, faced burnt by the suns rays.

I’ve had the freedom smelling the distinct smell of the Sistine Chapel and seen how light plays off the waters surface at the longest coastline in the world, Chile.

I know that heaven may look something like the Bolivian Salt Flats, life on a cloud.

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So I look back to a decade ago when I was 14 (LOL) awk middle schooler, brace face, volleyball fanatic, basically thought hoop earrings paired with pointed black heels with bellbottoms were “cool.”

If someone informed my 14 year old self of what I’d be like at 24 I think she would have panicked or cried. “KARA you’re not living in NYC? You aren’t a fashion designer? You don’t even own a Range Rover yet..what are you doing with your life?” I would have been ashamed of my present incarnation. Yet, I go back and I wouldnt trade anything in my life to make her dreams possible. She had no idea her first jobs would be in a field she absolutely loves, she didn’t know she would travel extensively to over 10 countries in Europe, dozens of cities and towns in South America and along the Pacific/ Atlantic coast of the US. She didn’t know that she would see a whole spectrum of colors, not just black and white.

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Life is never what you originally think it is going to be. Follow through with things that give you hope and a meaningful -faith- filled life. Engage more in the world, no matter how messy it is. Be willing to get your feet wet in networking events. Form more relationships, stay close to the things that make you smile more and make you feel alive.

So where will my footprints lead by 34..

I hope thirty- four year old Kara will own a business she loves running, that helps pay for her family and allows her to have time for those closest to her. I hope her passport is full of stamps. I hope she will be fully present in each and every moment, never missing a laugh, smile, game, hug, or family time. I hope she will look back on this exact moment and be proud of who she was, yet acknowledge that she has so much further to go in life.

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