Two years ago today, I stepped on a plane bound for Africa. It was a step that changed my life. As I look back on that day, I’m amazed at how that one step had such a powerful and direct impact on the steps I take today.
When I walked into training for my upcoming Africa trip, I had just finished my final presentation for my bachelor’s degree in Public Relations. I spent three days meeting my teammates, learning about Africa, and preparing for a month in rural Kenya. In the month between that training and the actual trip, I returned to Austin to walk across the stage and receive my diploma, walked down the aisle at four weddings of close friends, and walked along the beach as my now husband asked for my hand in marriage. No doubt, these were all pretty big steps in my life. But I had no idea that stepping onto that plane to another continent would be equally as big.
I spent the next month in Kenya hosting summer camp for hundreds of kids in a rural village close to the Tanzanian border. Many mornings, I went for a walk with a friend, watching the sunrise over the Chyulu Hills. I walked down many dirt roads visiting schools and homes of the people in the community. I ran (ok, I jogged) up and down the fields attempting to play soccer with the Africans- not an easy task. I had the profound privilege of walking alongside these people I hardly knew and I fell I love. I walked away with a desire to know more. More walking, more steps toward a life I never imagined for myself.
I got back to the states, went to one more wedding, and spent the next day driving to Nashville to pursue a career in the music business. A few months later, I found myself walking into Blood:Water Mission, not as a publicist, but as a finance assistant. I know it doesn’t make much sense, but here I am, still walking alongside some incredible people, both here in America, and across the world in Africa. We are all walking together toward the same goal and it’s a beautiful thing.
So I continue to take steps, not always knowing where I’m going or what lies in front of me. But I know I can’t stop, because wherever I go, I have to believe there is a reason, not only for the destination, but for the journey itself.