You guys, I have a big announcement. At least big in my books.
It’s something I’ve sat on and prayed over for many months.
It was a decision that was simultaneously really exciting and really terrifying.
It still terrifies me…
This has probably been one of my biggest tests of faith thus far. It’s required a lot of trust and begrudgingly coming to the realization that sometimes things aren’t supposed to be crystal clear, plans aren’t supposed to by crystal clear, because that’s how we exhibit our real trust in God.
So what is this big announcement? Why is it so terrifying?
Well…. I’m moving! Now I know you’re next question, where? If you know me you’re probably imagining somewhere foreign and exotic. South Africa possibly, or Turkey or Thailand? Nope.
Here you go, drumroll please…………….
Now I know the next questions to come to mind, when, where and why?
So, I’ll be living in the town of Soldotna, about 2.5 hours from Anchorage on the Kenai Peninsula. Theres no Walgreens, no Target and no malls. It’s going to be different, but I’m Ok with different.
The why takes a little more to explain.
For years I’ve wanted to be a Paramedic. I’ve attempted to pursue it on several occasions since graduating from college but other, awesome opportunities have always come up instead. I’ve always accepted it, trusting in God’s timing. There’s been a few points where I thought I might do something else, but I kept just coming back to EMT. My heart skips a beat every time I see a fire truck or ambulance. I just know it’s right.
Last year, when I started working for World Vision, I thought it would give me the perfect opportunity to do an EMT program at a local community college, but it became apparent pretty quickly that my schedule wouldn’t allow it. Once again, something got in the way. In hindsight though I realize just what God was doing, but I’ll get to that in a second.
Last fall I discovered the show Alaska State Troopers on Netflix and I just binge watched 3 seasons while working on various projects. Because I like to research things I randomly googled EMT programs in Alaska, just to see if they existed or what they were like. It was at this point I discovered that EMT/Paramedic programs run differently depending on the state. Each type of program has it’s own merits, but this opened up a box of opportunities I never knew I had, the chance to find a program that really is right for me. See, I’d always assumed I’d do a program in WA, since it’s home, but in WA EMT programs are certificate based then you have to work for a large amount of hours before even considering applying to a paramedic program. In other states, like OR and AK, EMT programs are actually degree programs, meaning you’re eligible for financial aid. They are also consecutive, meaning you can get everything done and be a full Paramedic in just over 2 years. This was very appealing to me, so in January I started thinking of moving to go to school, then in March I started praying about going back to school, and finally in May I decided to take the plunge and apply to a school.
Oh that was a scary moment.
In the end I decided to apply to Kenai Peninsula College, a branch of the University of Alaska Anchorage. First of all I chose it because they’ve been developing a pretty great Paramedic program, and the second reason, and this was huge, was that out of state tuition was waived. Yay for cheaper education!
When my acceptance letter and financial aid offer came in at the beginning of June I knew I had a lot to ponder and pray over. This is where the whole trusting God thing came in because I’ve never been to Alaska and I don’t know anyone in that part of the state. I’m literally going in blind. It also meant quitting my job at World Vision and trusting that God would provide some way to earn a stable income once I got there, because folks, Alaska ain’t cheap.
I still need to find a job, but I have no reason to think that God won’t help me find one. After all, he helped me find a great car for an incredible price. Did you see it?
I knew my poor little Kia Rio would be eaten alive by Alaska, I mean, it would cringe in the rain around here, I don’t even want to think what would happen in the snow! So, right around the same time I started considering moving to Alaska I started checking out cars online. I’d found a few good ones over the months but nothing I was ready to commit to or that completely met my checklist. Then, last week I found this beautiful 2009 Saturn Vue online. My Dad headed down to the dealership with me Saturday evening and within a few hours I was signing the papers for my new car! I couldn’t beleive it. God had provided it at the right time for the right price. This car is going to be perfect for Alaska and perfect for the drive up because yes… I’m driving.
It’s going to be a LONG road trip. I’m super excited for it and super exhausted by the thought of it. Right now the plan is to leave August 15 (class starts the 25th) and to take 5 days to travel up to Anchorage. It’s definitely going to be an adventure.
And speaking of adventure, did I mention I’m going to be living in dorms again? Ya, oye. I feel like I paid my dorm dues the first time around (I lived in the dorms all 4 years). I loved it, but I’m a lot older now, and the idea of living with a bunch of 18 year olds is kind of exhausting. At the same time there was something deep down telling me this was the right move to make, at least for now.
See, I don’t know anyone up there, I don’t know what the good and bad parts of town are, and rent is expensive. These dorms are also a little different than the ones I lived in before. They’re apartment style. Each apartment has 4 bedrooms, two bathrooms, a living space and a full kitchen. Everyone get’s their own bedroom which is really nice. I don’t think I could have done it if I’d had to share a bedroom with 2 roommates like the first time around.
So there you have it. Today I officially gave my 2 weeks notice at World Vision, that’s why I felt like I could finally share this with y’all, and trust me, it was REALLY HARD to keep in. Leaving World Vision is going to be really tough. While working in a call center isn’t my dream job, the organization is actually really, really great and is by far the best place I’ve ever worked. I’m going to miss working for a place that is so Christ centered in everything, but, I’m SOOOO excited to finally be following my dream.
Less than 4 weeks to go. Let the freak out begin!