Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Shoeless Seminarian Is Finished Internship!

Can you believe it? Your (shoeless) seminarian has finished her internship year (and she still wanders around sans shoes)!

It was officially finished two hours ago (at midnight) and now at 2am I sit here watching my friend, Kristin, pack while I attempt to put into words what this new transition feels like! Oh, and I get to watch Kristin pack because I already finished packing!

Packing to come home to Wisconsin? Well, some of that, but not quite yet. Nope. First of all it’s time for one last crazy Elly-trip before I hop back over the pond. This time it’s off to explore Jotunheimen National Park and to scale the two highest peaks in Northern Europe. Oh, and to relax in the sauna at the hytte in between the mountains. You really have to love the way Norwegians to the outdoors!

I can’t wait! Not only to see more of Norway, but after a long period intellectual exercise, I love how it feels to be completely physically exhausted (as opposed to mentally)! This trip might be a bit much though.

It will be 9 days to do what the Norwegian Trekking Association considers a 7 day hike. But they expect 7 days with a daypack, buying all of your food along the way. Kristin and I are tenting, bringing Kaya the dog, and packing about half of our food. But at least something will be lighter on the way, as to celebrate the end of internship I chopped my hair for ‘locks of love’ earlier today (on a whim). Yup, I really do enjoy marking the major milestones or transition points in my life!

When so major an internal moment has passed, I find it hard to comprehend when there is no tangible equivalent. I feel at the moment that I have scaled so many mountains this year, grown in stamina, and toned my pastoral muscles. But none of that shows on the outside. So, instead I chop my hair and head out to scale physical mountains. Maybe that makes no sense, but somehow it makes complete sense in my head.

Then, after the mountains are scaled both mentally and physically, it will be time to come home, home to First Lutheran in Wisconsin, home to Wartburg Seminary in Iowa, home to family and friends that I have looked forward to seeing for more than a year now. Home to continue the journey and discern this call. Home to reflect on the year that has passed and the possibility of what is to come. But Norway has become ‘home’, too. Part of me is so sad to leave. I almost didn’t get through my last sermon on Sunday on account of tears.

As to what I’m feeling right now? I’m really not sure. I’ll let you know when I come down from the mountain in a couple of weeks.

The still Shoeless Seminarian

to see pictures of the End of Internship haircut, click here: Crazy things happen at the end of internship!