Honestly, I thought something like this would happen, but I thought my grandpa would kick it, and I would really have to make a decision; leave or stay. I am grateful that it was a friend that, while I am heartbroken and definitely grieving, because I have not considered the option of leaving.

A friend of mine died last week, and the service is today. I have seen talk on Facebook that makes me even more grateful for her. People are sharing how they had not been close to her since high school etc and how we should seize the day etc. I knew this girl. I knew her struggles. I knew how successful she really was when she died. I am not without regret. I do not know her daughter. I really wish that I did. We were close in the way that I would never hesitate to send her a message or see if she wanted to have coffee, no matter how long it had been since the last coffee. We were close in a way that there was never awkward silence. We were close in a way that I didn’t realize was special. Don’t feel bad, guys. She didn’t let too many people stay close. There were gaps of time between our fun. But we never drifted too far.

So now what? While I completely understand that this is not about me, I have to find a way to deal. I can only tell you what has happened so far and hope that getting it on paper helps. I have spent considerable time working on my anger. I have quit running from myself. I have learned how to deal with the hot mess that I am. I have also never lost anyone, and have had a fear of someone dying for a long time. God spoon feeds me what he knows I can handle. I know I will make it through this.

However, this has propelled me into culture shock. I want comfort and there is none here. I want my skin gods, I want my cat, I want my bed, I want ice cream, and I want to be able to go to the gd service! I have never been more grateful for my laptop. It is held together with electrical tape and my Bluetooth keyboard was donated. They are both saving my life though. All the keyboards here are different. That was something I didn’t see coming. Without my American keyboards, my frustration level would be through the roof. They are allowing me to write, fulfill my obligations, and talk to my skin gods back home.

I miss home, I miss my routine, I miss the opportunity to help someone out. I miss my church and I miss my mental health maintenance. Everything is different here. It was so fun at first and I’m sure it will be again, but this is what has happening right now.

I have become critical of self and others. I have lost my acceptance of time and space. I have lost a little bit of direction. This has made me realize how much drive and direction I have on a normal basis which is hilarious because I am not even sure what my major will be yet! I am a 34 year old sophomore in college who hasn’t taken any of the pre-business classes that I need to move on to my junior year and therefore will be repeating my sophomore year and the big state school of KU next year. That is an indicator of my acceptance level right there!

So what’s the solution? My idea is to take the weekend off. I may not even leave the hostel. I intent to curl up with the hottie, cook good comfort food and recharge the battery. There will be sleep, laughter, and maybe a Skype with my mom.

I have been seizing the day for some time now. The reward of not having too much regret when something like this happens is an insane motivator.

By Holly Ranker, Social Media Journalist

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