Monday, November 21, 2016

Complete Trust and Total Surrender?

Your eyes do not deceive you. It's another blog post... a week later. lol. Y'all know my excuse: coursework. I spent the entire week last week studying for a "do or die" exam. I spent about 12 hours seated in a chair in the kitchen, going over lecture videos and flash cards until it was time to sleep on some days. Other days I had other things going on so I didn't get nearly enough time to study. I even caught myself repeating some memorized terms while I was falling asleep or even waking up. I was in the zone. I even paid for my exam this time around (I couldn't get to see my regular proctor this past week). I took my exam on Saturday morning. I was confident while taking the exam. "Oh, I know this! And this! Yes, I'm going to pass...!" Half an hour later: 66%. My reaction was to be speechless after saying: "wait, I'm sorry... what?! 66%?! How's that possible? I knew this material!"

I spent an entire week focused on nothing (observation hours excluded) but studying. I took a break from social media for several days, only updating the Rosary novena dates via Twitter and FB for those who asked to be reminded. Texts went unanswered for hours at a time. I fell behind on emails. It didn't matter. I worked the hardest I've ever worked on any exam... and I didn't pass. Since it was a "do or die" exam, it meant I wasn't going to pass the class with the required B- needed to take three of the last courses prior to graduation.

I cried for a minute or two. I was disappointed. I put everything I had into this exam. I hadn't experienced any mental fog while studying for it. I ate well. I slept well. I kept my anxiety levels down for most days (side note: I had a weird 12 hours of continual anxiety and palpitations on Wednesday night into Thursday morning). There was literally nothing else I could do to pass this exam that wasn't cheating -- which will never be an option.

Though I was disappointed, I was also oddly at peace with everything. It wasn't the end of the world. It just meant that I had to change my plans again. I've been doing that most of my adult life. I'll have to retake this course next semester along with another (new) course and take the last three classes I was planning to take in the Spring during the Summer and/or Fall 2017 semesters. Instead of graduating next semester (Spring), it means I'll have to graduate either in the Summer or Fall 2017, only 3-7 months later than anticipated. Everything will be delayed for less than a year. Even if I wasn't getting a chance to continue this degree, I have options to keep moving forward.

I think it was appropriate that this happened the day before the feast of Christ the King. I was lovely to be reminded that when chips it the fan, it simply means that it wasn't the time for it yet. God has plans for me -- plans greater than I could ever imagine -- that I'm not going to fight it. I'm just going to adapt myself to whatever obstacles pop up. I'm so confident that this is the path God wants me to take right now that I don't mind the delay. It might be because I'm so used to it. I started college a year later than I should've despite graduating from high school a year and a half ahead of schedule. I graduate with my first degree 4-5 years later than I should've. I didn't move to England to finish my first degree, having to stay in L.A. My vocation has also been (obviously) delayed, for whatever reason. Christ is King. I have put my life in His hands and I trust that everything will happen when it's supposed to. Again, I will have to roll with the punches as they come but I'm confident that He is helping lead me down whatever path He wants me to take when He wants me to take it. I'm not going to worry about. That goes for everything -- health, school, career, vocation... every aspect of my life.

There has been a big change in me since I started the 54-day Rosary novena. A friend I've known for nearly a decade saw it in me when we went to a young adult group meeting two weekends ago. My mother has also noticed and commented on it (without knowing that my friend had also commented on it). I'm not quite sure what it is but, looking back at it, I can see what they're talking about. Maybe I've finally learned how to let go of what I can't control. Could it perhaps be a confidence / complete trust / total surrender in doing God's will? This wasn't even an intention for the novena but this novena is powerful. Even when things don't go well, amazing things happen. Perhaps this is one of the fruits of this novena. Who knows. We're only 21 days into it.

Anyway, I just wanted to share these thoughts with y'all. I should have more time to blog this week but, again, don't quote me on it. Finals start December 7th and go through December 16th but the last modules/sections opened today so I'm going to try to finish all the final assignments by Wednesday so I can a) have more time to study for finals and b) do it in smaller, more manageable chunks so that I'm not completely overwhelmed during finals week(s). I should have more blogging time if I do things this way. Fingers crossed! I'll definitely blog tomorrow because it's a very special feast day for me. Hint: it's in my name. ;)

Alright, I should go do some homework or something. ;) Oh, wait...! Congrats to Catherine and Kimberly who were the Magnificat Advent Companion winners! I've sent both of you the codes and I hope you enjoy the iOS apps this Advent season.

I hope y'all had a lovely weekend and enjoy this last week before Advent begins. :)

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D

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