The last 10 days have been a whirlwind. Everything in my world has change. Friendships have come and gone. There was a chance I was going to head to Africa for part of the winter but that fell through. I had a job waiting for me that fell through, then there was another one and that fell through. I had a place to live that fell through then I had something else lined up and I think you get the picture. Same for LeeRoy. I wanted to be close to him so I could see him often but it's not working out that way. I ran out of money and was at one point negative $50 in the bank. I have great people around me that really want to see me succeed. They have stepped up and helped me out. I now have $0 in the bank, $11 in my hand and the bills are just around the corner. All I can say is sometimes it all moves sideways on you. Honestly though, I'm not stressed about it. I like chaos. Plus, compared to the problems of my counter part in Africa (ST) and what they go through on a daily basis I feel like my life is just fine. More than fine, I feel blessed. All my problems are a walk in the park. Well, all except Mitch's death. That's has been a hard one for me. The crazy thing is all of the drama happened while I was flying and driving back and forth from Salt Lake City to Seattle.
Flights, driving and trains rides. . . and all my plans change by the hour. I would have a plan in the morning- "take the train to Spokane", and at the train station the plan would change again- where am I going to sleep? By the time I get a ticket I'm headed to Portland. As of right now LeeRoy is safe and happy with other goats in Olympia. I'm in Portland for a few days, Friday I head to Spokane. I have a lot of job leads but nothing is a sure thing yet. I have an opportunity in Seattle in January but I'm not sure how long it will be for.
I've been second guessing my decisions. For the last month they've had record high temperatures in Utah. It makes me feel like I should have kept going. The reality is I had planned to be done around this time.. Ha! But I really underestimated so many factors.
1. If you want to keep your goat healthy and happy it's best to keep him at about 10 miles a day. Make sure you take lots of breaks and days off.
2. Walking with a goat near any city will take a long time. Everyone wants to talk to you and take pictures. I love to tell the stories of Uzima and the kids, about my best friend ST and how he started this whole thing with Fred, and then my part of this and how the whole crazy thing came together. It's so wild and against all olds, that the only way to explain all the crazy things that have happened is it was all put together by God. (Side note: my mom is over there now. She is working with the kids; another God thing. She has already been there a few months and extended her stay twice. I would not be surprised if she never came back and that's cool with me. It makes me proud of her. There is a whole story about my mom and I that I will share later.
3. I should have planned better. Like I have said before I didn't train. All I did to prepare for this was sit on the couch eating Jimmy John sandwiches and watch YouTube videos for camping trips. . . Hahaha. Just writing that makes me laugh. I made a lot of simple mistakes just because of my lack of knowledge. Honestly the combination of the Goat, me being a city kid and all that comes with walking across america there real is no way to prepare for all the obstacles. I had no prior knowledge of goats. I never lived on a barn or around any live stock. I did have dogs when I was growing up- I love dogs - but I would say my parents took more care of them then I did. Other than cleaning up the dog poo before I mowed the lawn, all I did was share my bed at night. My dog would always sleep in my bed. . .kid heaven.
On a slightly more serious note, I want to bring up something that is interesting to me. A small detail that really has my mind twisted up. Every time I post about Jesus or scripture, a comment about Uzima and my mission, or the work that is going on over there I get far less likes on face book. In fact, when I'm bold about Jesus people unlike my page. I'm really not disappointed at all, I guess it is just a crazy fact that if I post a picture of LeeRoy I can get 80-120 "likes", but if I post a picture of the Uzima kids or some bible quote I will maybe get 30 likes. Now, again, it's not about the "likes", I'm not posting for approval. It's just an interesting experience. Either way, in all of that Needle2square and Uzima stand for God alone gets the glory! and the "LIKES". I want to end with this bible verse that just. . .gives me so much strength and joy. And makes me feel so loved by Jesus. To me these are the most important 22 verses to me. Some of the most beautiful words in the bible to me.
Bless the Lord , O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name! Bless the Lord , O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's. The Lord works righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed. He made known his ways to Moses, his acts to the people of Israel. The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger forever. He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us. As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him. For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass; he flourishes like a flower of the field; for the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place knows it no more. But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him, and his righteousness to children's children, to those who keep his covenant and remember to do his commandments. The Lord has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all. Bless the Lord , O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, obeying the voice of his word! Bless the Lord , all his hosts, his ministers, who do his will! Bless the Lord , all his works, in all places of his dominion. Bless the Lord , O my soul! (Psalms 103:1-22 ESV)
I would give up the goat for this child any day...