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Clearing Out My Brain
With a newsletter called A Journey in Liminal Space, it is not a surprise that I frequently think about transitions.
Our daughter began secondary school in the past week.
Our tenant from Greece moved out this week.
A new tenant from Asia is arriving soon.
Liz and I are both, to one degree or another, making changes, or at least shifts with work.
During times of so much change, I often ask what-if questions. “What if I would have spoken to the professor who told me I should become an economist?” Or the one who told me I should become a sports journalist (of course, he didn’t foresee what the internet would do to newspapers).
Yesterday, I was prayer walking around Raheny, where we landed when we first arrived in Dublin in 2012. The house was huge with 5 bedrooms (there were 6 of us). It was not well insulated, but it was a great place. But I felt strongly we needed to move to Clontarf. Our landlord tried to talk us out of it.
Over the past few years, I’ve wondered, what if we had stayed? Would he have helped us by the house? It would be great to live in Raheny! I find myself tying my brain up in knots and kicking myself for a decision I made a decade ago.
Part of that is growing up constantly being questioned and criticised for, well, whatever. Over the past few years, I’ve begun to find some freedom in that area.
If we had stayed in that house, there is no way of knowing if he would have helped us buy it eventually. (And as I type that sentence, I’m reminded that we couldn’t get internet there either).
But most importantly, I know that if we had stayed there, our daughter would not have gone to the creche or the school she did. And so many of the friends we have made in the past decade, we would never have met.
While regret loves to sneak in and suck the peace and joy out of life, I’m deciding to be thankful for leaving Raheny 11 years ago because it allowed us to be part of an incredible community of friends!
Worth a Read: America’s Surprising Partisan Divide on Life Expectancy
Around the time we moved to Dublin, Liz and I read a series of articles based on the book American Nations describing how the US is really 11 distinct nations. It was a helpful way to understand how different parts of the country act and view the world so differently. We still bring it up in conversations. We both grew up in Yankeedom.
Earlier this week, the same author released fascinating research regarding life expectancy within these 11 nations, America’s Surprising Partisan Divide on Life Expectancy. Although there is so much more to the article, his findings regarding who settled in an area and how they view life impact the life expectancy of those who live there now.
What I’m Reading:
Almost a year ago, in an effort to not look at my phone or watch TV when I should be sleeping, I began listening to science fiction and fantasy books (Libby is a big help!). I still have sleep issues, but it is much better. I listened to Station Eleven and The Ocean at the End of the Lane recently and enjoyed them both a great deal.
I’m trying to do a better job of taking more pictures. Here are two, without comment, from my walk around Raheny.
I pray your weekend is filled with peace and you experience the presence of Jesus.