I’m not sure why I’m at a loss for words when it comes to writing about my Israel trip. Maybe it’s because I experienced so much in such a short amount of time, and now I’ve been home for two weeks and life has resumed right where I left off and it feels like it never happened, like it was all a dream. Only it did happen and I have all these photos and memories to prove it.
In my high school yearbook, there is a quote next to my photo: Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end. Wise words from a 90’s alternative rock band that made so much sense. Back then, life was divided into four year increments. Four years of elementary school, then four years of middle school, and four years of high school. Most of us went on to four years of college, myself included. And then the four-year increments end and this vast desert that is the future is spread out before me. “Ok, I just graduated college…and now I go find a job…for the rest of my life. Holy shit.” Everything’s so planned out. And we just go with the flow…until we hit that metaphorical desert and realize we don’t want to die here in our grey cubicles.
I went to the actual desert when I was in Israel and slept in a Bedouin tent. At night, our guide brought us into the desert holding hands in a line. We giggled as we stumbled into the darkness hoping we didn’t step in camel poop. We stood in a circle and he instructed us to take a few steps from each other and be silent to absorb the stillness of the night sky. In that moment, I felt so small, and so alone, yet we were all together.
I’ve been in the working world for over four years now, and I’m feeling it. The four-year turnover, that “what’s next” tick. I suppose the next phase is the full transition into adulthood: marriage, parenthood, etc. but it’s not so cut and dry as the four year increments of schooling. This is when life does what it wants. Some of my friends have high-powered careers, some people are back in school, some are becoming parents. Whatever this next phase may bring, we’re all in it together.