I have to laugh at myself. Especially after I write a post about all the *calm* I'm going to work toward this summer. As soon as I hit publish on that, my calendar walked over to me and said, "Calm, ha! Pack your bags and edit that story and schedule swim lessons and here .. we ... go!" (That's the edited version of what my calendar sounds like. Sometimes it swears, though I'm working on that.)

The truth is, despite a full summer calendar, I've had some pretty radical shifts happen the past few weeks. I've prayed a lot, and done some personal writing, and slept a ton. The end result was a release of -- a truce with -- struggles that were taking too much energy. 

I stood at the edge of the water a few weeks ago during this epic reporting trip and realized this.  Life's tough enough without extra stresses. I surrendered some anxieties at the water, somewhere between Gulf Shores, Alabama and Panama City Beach, Florida. It's a rather long story.

So for now, I'll share what happened today.   




Today I was walking back to my office, and a colleague introduced me to the lovely Kristen Luna. I've followed Kristen's incredible travel blog, and been intrigued with her world travel -- as well as her return to the South (Nashville). 

I've looked at photos from her travels and recognized a kindred spirit -- someone in a boat, on an island, sitting next to Rihanna (!). And then she was standing outside my office.

We chatted for a few minutes. I was, as I always am, excited to meet a digitally-savvy journalist. For a second, I played the to-do list of my day in my head. The workout, the phone calls, the calendar. And then I put it aside and said, "Hey, what you doing for lunch?"

So glad that I did. Travel, journalism, the digital world  and the South-- we spoke the same language. She shared a bit of her experiences sailing during the Semester at Sea, and I my dream of long-term travel. We talked about truth in blogging, and I shared how difficult it is for me to write completely honestly in this space.

"Sometimes I'm not sure how much to reveal. I want to write a lot more," I said.

Her response -- well, that's between us. But I love having a new friend who understands.


Kristen -- whether she knows it or not (hi Kristen!) is one of those people who made me realize I love it when life just happens.

The lesson: It seems that every time I stop fighting, every time I surrender, blessings happen. I believe in these shifts.