A Year Later

Time flies

Wow.  I can’t believe that a year ago today I was saying goodbye to my Dad and walking into the airport to begin a life changing journey.  Heading to Germany for two months on my own was one of the biggest leaps I have taken in my life thus far.  I know I have spoken and written on the experience I had and the impact it had on me previously, but looking back a year later I can now see even more the immense effects that journey had on my life.

First things first, I long to return every day.  There is literally not a day that goes by that I don’t yearn for a new adventure and a return to Europe.  I don’t even think yearn is a strong enough word to explain how I feel.  I know for certain that this feeling will never go away, but it is a feeling that I am 100% okay with.  This feeling shows me how much that experience changed me in so many ways.  My wanderlust grew 100 fold, and even though it is hard knowing that I do not have the luxury to just up and go whenever, I know my wanderlust will guide me to many adventures and experiences in the future.

Nowadays, as you know, I have started another adventure in a new place.  I have been here at SFA almost 5 months now, which is almost just as hard to believe as the fact that it’s been a year since I left for Germany.  However, it has been an amazing 5 months.  It has had its ups and downs, I miss seeing my family and friends all the time, but I can truly say that I am settling in great and love it here.  My job is the best one I have had, and I can’t see myself doing anything else at the moment.  Every day I go to the office, yet I feel as if I don’t ever have to “work”.  Isn’t that what 99% of us long for?  “Find a job you love and you can truly say you never have to work a day in your life” (something like that).  It is an amazing feeling to be in a position where I can personally vouch for that statement.

By the way, I have the best boss and coworkers in the world.  There is a true balance of fun, family, and career here, and I couldn’t ask for a better atmosphere to be a part of.  Season has officially begun and we just finished up our second week of official practice.  Due to the fact that our girls workout all summer and fall, and we are able to “practice” during these times, the feeling is different when “official practice” starts at this level than it is at JUCO, D3, or D2, but it is still a very special feeling.  Nothing like that “basketball season is upon us” feeling in the air!!  Especially when the actual outside air feels like “basketball season”.  In my opinion there is Summer, Spring, and Basketball Season.

I hope some of you have the chance to watch us play this year.  I feel as if we have a good balance of returners and new faces that will lead us to big things.  Our bench is deep and we are making huge strides in every area.  I believe it is going to be a special and fun year for us all.  Here in less than a month we will travel to South Dakota to open up the season.  The University of South Dakota is a traditionally successful program and we will actually be playing the very first basketball game in their brand new state of the art arena.  They sold the game out a month ago.  Should be fun, and would be a HUGE win and start to the season if we go up there and handle business.  Once we get rolling with playing, I will make sure to keep you all updated with how things are going both on social media and through my blog.  Also, if you have any questions on games, etc. feel free to contact me through email (scottke@sfasu.edu) or any of my social media outlets.  I’d be glad to chat!

Well, that is it for now.  I hope you all are enjoying this beautiful weather, getting outside, being active, and getting pumped for basketball season!!  Thanks as always for reading!!

Love,

Kayla

 

 

Repost: How to Know Who Your Real Friends Are

I know who mine are, and I couldn’t be more thankful!

How to Know Who Your Real Friends Are

Allison Fallon

These days it seems like people have a thousand friends without really having any friends at all.

I read an article in the New York Times recently that talked about this—about how sometimes the people we think are our friends aren’t really our friends, and vice versa.

Recent research indicates that only about half of perceived friendships are mutual. That is, someone you think is your friend might not be so keen on you. Or, vice versa, as when someone you feel you hardly know claims you as a bestie. —Kate Murphy

Add to that what I’ve heard my friend Bob say several times—that there are really only room for about 8 people around your deathbed—and I don’t know about you, but it leaves me with the question:

Who are my friends—really?

A few months ago I was going through a really hard personal time in my life. And I began to notice something. There was a key difference between the friends I thought were my friends and the ones who actually were my friends.

The difference was really simple.

The real friends just showed up. It was that easy.

realfriends-full

One night I was feeling afraid, so called a friend and she came over and sat with me on the couch. We watched TV. We didn’t even talk about anything. But she knew I didn’t want to be alone, so she came over. Another friend showed up the morning of a big appointment and brought me my favorite coffee drink and gave me a pep talk.

Other friends checked in regularly on the phone or text message, just to see how I was doing. People sent cards and gifts.

Other people disappeared.

Quite literally. It was sort of interesting to watch it happen. If you’ve ever been through a divorce or gotten a terrible diagnosis or lost a family member, I’m sure you’ve experienced this. Some people are so there. They’re a phone call away. You practically can’t get rid of them.

Other people it’s just like… they drop off the map.

And to be honest, I didn’t think much of it at the time. I wasn’t lacking for support, so I didn’t really need those other people to show up. But when I reflected on it later, I just thought that was so interesting.

Actions really do speak louder than words.

Our actions say more about who we are and what matters to us than what comes out of our mouths.

You can talk all day about how much you care for your friends and how important they are to you, but if you don’t show up for them—if you don’t show your face at birthday parties and anniversary parties and random Thursday night dinners and wedding showers and baby showers and TV viewing parties…

They’re not your friends. You’re not theirs.

This is not a dig. It’s not even a shameful thing. Nobody needs to apologize for not being friends with everybody (after all, only eight people will fit around your deathbed). It’s just the truth.

And if we can’t tell the truth, we can’t love or be loved.

If you want to know if somebody loves you, it’s simple.

Do they show up—physically, emotionally, spiritually, practically? Can they show up for you when you need them the most? Or, do you constantly find yourself wondering where they went, and why they aren’t around?

Let me say this one more time: if you want to know the truth of a person, pay attention to his or her actions—more than his or her words.

Words are easy. Actions are where our truth lives.

Also, if you have a thousand people you call friends but you aren’t really showing up for them, can you cut yourself a break? Can you make a decision to stop spreading yourself so thin? Can you choose the eight friends you’d like to end up at your deathbed and invest more fully and deeply in them?

You’ll feel more loved and more connected and more at peace with yourself.

Patience

“Patience is a virtue.”

It has been a while since I’ve posted any original content on here, and I am sorry about that. Thank you for having patience with me as I learned about patience and am now able to write this post.

As many of you know through knowing me closely, reading this blog, or from conversations we may have had, I have been “in between jobs” for the past year or so. Long story short, I left Oklahoma and my coaching job at Cameron last May with the hopes of landing a job as a Director of Operations somewhere over the summer. This did not come to fruition and I was placed in a position of the “what now?” mindset. I lived abroad, I lived at home with my parents, and I simply lived day to day for possibly the first time in my life.

Instead of thinking “what now?” in the way many people believe it to be of thinking, “What am I doing?”, “Why can’t I get a job?”, “Will I ever get a job?”, I chose to live in the “What now, God?” mindset instead. I was done making plans and decided to fully rely on Him to guide me. Now, of course I am human and this wasn’t a 100% of the time mindset, but I relied on faith and His strength to carry me through the times of questioning. They were luckily very brief and were taken away as quickly as they had come.

So, through this mindset I had finally been able to acquire, what did I learn the most? You guessed it, PATIENCE!! The trait that has been alluding me for probably my entire life. Instead of landing my “dream job” I found myself as a substitute teacher sitting in a class of chatty 4th graders. In a resource classroom helping students read four grades below where they should be. I found myself in a foreign country interacting daily with a seven year old boy whom I couldn’t understand, and who couldn’t understand me. In place of a job working with elite college athletes, I found myself coaching a group 2nd-4th grade girls (who had more pent up energy than any kids I have ever met).

Ultimately, God had told me, rather He YELLED at me, “Kayla, listen here. I know you have all these plans in your little plan everything out just the way you want it head, but I have greater plans for you. First, though, I am gonna teach you a little patience.” And I am determined he was smiling and giggling along the way as I shook my head at middle school boys, said “nevermind” to misunderstanding Germans, and placed my hands on a 3rd grade girl’s shoulders just so she would stop running around and listen to what I was trying to teach her. If you don’t believe our Father has a sense of humor, just check out a coach teaching college athletes, and then watch them attempt to coach youth basketball…

It was trying. It was tough. I was emotional at times. I felt lost. I felt found. I lived. And most importantly I learned.

About 3 weeks ago I was offered and accepted a Director of Operations position at Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, TX. Yes, I FINALLY landed my “dream job”, and I could not feel more blessed and thankful. Here is the thing though, I would be thankful had I not received it, because through my experiences over the past year I have learned and grown so much more than I ever would have had I given up, or lived how I was living only worrying about the future. The job is just the icing on the cake that God gave me the recipe to bake.

I pray that I continue to give thanks, ask for guidance, and the chance to learn patience more and more every day. I still have so much to learn and accomplish. This is just the beginning. It is often when we finally get what we want that we forget who gave us that gift.

We lose the gift that God has in store for us when we seek out our own.

A Quarter of a Century

“My friends say I should act my age.  What’s my age again? What’s my age again?” – Blink 182

As of yesterday I am officially 25.  All day I was asked how it felt, and every single time my reply was “I don’t know?”, because I truly honestly do not know how I feel about officially hitting a quarter of a century.  So much has happened, and I have had the privilege and blessing to be able to experience much more than most 25 year olds have.  From my education, to travels, adventures, and career experiences, I can definitely say I have had quite the life so far…

But what now??  Once again, I don’t really know.  I have an idea of what the next few months holds, or at least what I plan it to hold, which more than ever I have learned this past year that just when you make a “plan” God says “Whoa whoa whoa.  Hold up just one second, who ever said that YOU were in charge.  Now here is MY plan for you.”  So ultimately,  I don’t know.  Maybe “I don’t know” should have been the title of this post.

“Might be a quarter life crisis, or just a stirring in my soul.” – John Mayer

I definitely feel like I have reached a quarter life crisis.  I am currently taking a hiatus from the career path that I have been on the past two years in college coaching.  More on that to come soon, but to make a long story short, lots of phone calls, lots of tears, and lots of disappointment.  BUT…lots of soul searching and GOD searching as well.  LOTS of God searching.  “And isn’t it ironic? Don’t you think?” – Alanis (yes just Alanis.  A soul like that needs no last name)  Often times we only seek God when we are in trouble.  I have found that things work out a heck of a lot better if we seek him in all times! Not just the good, not just the bad, but ALL THE DANG TIME.  I know it sounds cliché, but the amount of peace I have found recently in both the highs and lows of life are in direct correlation with my personal time I have finally decided to spend with Him.  Because in the end, isn’t it peace that we are all searching for? Some say happiness, but in my opinion happiness is a byproduct of being at peace with each other, with ourselves, and trusting the Lord to take control of our lives.  Pick up your Bible, get on your knees, “Get that dirt off your shoulder” -Jay-Z(if you know me you know I had to), and get to know the One who created you.

I can’t wait to share with you what is next for me, I just have to figure out exactly how to go about doing so, but to all of my fellow 20-somethings going through a quarter life crisis of your own, or even you middle aged people going through it too, just remember…

“And the rain is gonna wash away I believe it.” – Matchbox Twenty

Repost via Quinton Poe:     “O Captain! My Captain!”

Last Thursday night or early that morning, depending on how you look at it, I went out to see what the big buzz was concerning the meteor shower that was occurring. Safe to say, the buzz didn’t disappoint. I followed the instructions as given by NASA for the best possible viewing time and location. So […]

https://quintonpoe10.wordpress.com/2015/08/18/o-captain-my-captain/

Good Reads Thursday: Success

“The world’s definition of success is flawed.”

So many of us view success based on accrual of worldly items and in monetary terms, but we could all learn a thing or two from a certain group of wonderful people. 

Enjoy. 

The True Meaning of Success And Why It Matters

Last week I was sitting in my kitchen, talking with a dear friend about life, recent events and what matters most and she said something that struck a cord with me. She said, “The world’s definition of success is all a sham.” Let me back up a bit. Days before having this conversation, my friend…

The True Meaning of Success And Why It Matters

Excuse the Randomness

It has been a while since I have written about anything other than the Fed Up Challenge or reposting other bloggers’ writings.  So I figured it was time for a little current update.  Excuse the randomness.

I am currently training for a half marathon, and have been for the past couple of months.  It is something I have always wanted to do, but could never quite find the time or motivation to actually do or get started with training for one.  But this spring after season was over I decided to put aside the excuses and just do it.  It has been time consuming, and has pretty much eliminated my beloved lifting schedule, but it has definitely been worth it.  To me, there is nothing better than the feeling you get after demolishing a long run.  (Side note: I ran 10.5 miles of Saturday and my calves are still thanking me for it as we speak).  The race is a week from Saturday and I can’t wait!!   I also struggle with competitiveness.  Now I know this shouldn’t be considered a “struggle”, but when it could cause you to die because you want to WIN not just finish a long race, it becomes a struggle.  I think I have finally trained my brain to just be happy with finishing this first one though…we will see come race day when I start scouting out the competition at the start line, and sprint out of the gate.  It is just in my nature as a coach and former college athlete to settle for nothing less than 1st place.

On another note, the past couple of weeks have been loaded with weddings, concerts, and Ranger games.  I am not complaining one bit.  My cousin Shannon got married last weekend to a wonderful man and she looked BEAUTIFUL *tear*

I also attended the concerts of Mat Kearney(My absolute fav since like 2006), and a combo concert with Matt Nathanson, The Fray, and Train.  Mainly went for The Fray, but all three artists put on a great show and the weather was PERFECT!  No rain(finally), and no Texas heat (yet).

Yesterday we went to the Ranger game and let me tell you, I am so glad Hamilton is back!! Not just for the walk off double to center field, but also because I hope that Texas and DFW can be somewhere he can live and thrive as a human being.  I just feel like LA wasn’t the place God needed him to be.  It is so good to see him succeeding and gaining his confidence back once again.  Also, no rain, and no heat (yet).

A week from tomorrow my sister and I will be headed to Seattle/Canada to site-see, run the half marathon, and to see the US Women’s National Team play in the World Cup!!  I will be marking two things off of my bucket list (half marathon, and World Cup) in the next couple of weeks and I’m ecstatic!  I am a total USWNT groupie, but most of y’all probably know that.  I still want to be on the team “when I grow up”, and Mia Hamm will forever be my idol.  There is nothing like US soccer.  NOTHING.

I will cry if they don’t win this World Cup(I do every time)…I have been waiting for this since ’99.  But they WON’T!!  They’re taking it home again, I can feel it!!

Okay I will stop rambling now.  Hope everyone’s summer is off to a great start, and congrats to all you teachers for finishing another year of educating our youth!!! We can never thank you enough!! And to all my friends who just finished their first full year of teaching…kudos to you.  I taught some courses at Cameron this past year and I don’t know how y’all do it all day every day.  Much respect.