I have a lot of feelings that I don’t really know how to deal with.

I’ve written and rewritten this post about seven times now. It’s like I get three sentences into trying to say goodbye and the rest of my words can’t even make it onto my keyboard. The words that I want to say get tangled up in the recesses of my brain that I’ve realized I’m avoiding.

I am beyond excited to be going home. I can’t wait to get off that airplane and see the small crowd waiting for me. I’m so ready to collapse into my mom’s arms after the end of a long few years. I’m excited for the cold and the snow and the Christmas festivities. I’m excited to see my precious niece. But it’s getting increasingly hard to say goodbye to this place I’ve come to call home.

At the moment I’m sitting in my room enjoying the breeze and the quiet of the house right now. The years that I’ve spent living in community have taught me to treasure these calm moments of peace and solitude. But as I look around the walls and peek out into the hallway I can’t help but think about how tonight is my last night in Lewis House. Tomorrow will be my last day having a roommate for the foreseeable future. These are the last moments of a long season. A season of hard things, but of infinitely more good things.

Dang it. I’m crying now. Thinking about how in two days I’m not going to wake up to my roomie closing the door as she goes to the showers. Realizing that when Tuesday comes I’m not going to head to the office and start my week off with community worship. Knowing that next Saturday I won’t get to see the young people I’ve spent three years investing into. Coming to terms with the fact that I’ve spent almost a year preparing to go and I still don’t feel 100% ready to, and being 100% sure that I never really will be. There are so many things here that I love so much and I will miss with all my heart.

My friends.

All the people I live with and work with and spend pretty much every waking moment with. My heart literally hurts thinking about saying goodbye to all those who have become such a constant in my life. You’ve pushed me to love people unconditionally and to be more intentional and generous in my relationships and I’m so grateful for that.

My leaders.

I’ve grown so much over the past few years because I’ve had leaders standing behind me and pushing me to better myself and use my talents and gifts. It makes me nervous to think about stepping out from under the wings of those who have cared for me during my time here, but I know that they have worked to prepare me for my calling.

My ministry.

I know that no matter where I go I will have opportunities to do some kind of missions work, but I’ll probably never do exactly the same thing that I’ve been doing here in Newcastle. At the age of 18 I was working to keep records for a national organization and assisting in government reporting. I can’t imagine being given more opportunities than I’ve received in my time here. I’ve been championed to pursue my calling in a way that has prepared me to go home, but I’m still going to miss my job here.

I can’t really fathom how I’m going to feel in a few months when I look back and reminisce about my time spent living in Australia. It’s strange to think about how this huge part of my life will just be memories soon, granted, they’ll be memories I cherish for the rest of my life.

I have become the person I’m meant to be and I know that I wouldn’t have been able to do that in any other place than Newcastle, Australia. I’ve learned so many things about God, others, and myself. Things that I will hold on to forever. I’m so grateful to everyone who made the past few years possible. People who have supported me through prayer, finances, friendships, and so much more. I really couldn’t have done any of this without those people helping me.

Woah…There’s a lot of feelings going on in my head and heart right now. I’m going to cry a little bit and watch Pride and Prejudice.

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