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I cannot believe I have officially been home for an entire month and how quickly it has gone by! It hasn’t been the easiest transition but I am finally starting to feel normal again. Looking back I cannot believe how quickly this summer went by and how much it impacted my life. It seems so crazy to think about how much 10acious 10 was able to accomplish and grow as a team and family. Waking up to a 2.5 bedroom duplex with 11 of my newly added brothers and sisters and heading off to the office was my reality for the summer. It was always filled with laughter, echoing hip-hop music, and crowded. We spent our evenings hanging out and trying to come up with activities that we hadn’t already done in Seaside. My bothers and sisters represented different ethnicity, culture, and ideology. We shared tears, laughs, and countless memories. I would be lying if I didn’t say that I miss them more than anything right now! The last thing I expected to gain this summer was a family but that’s what I got.

As I mentioned it hasn’t been the easiest transition for me. I returned to Missouri and instantly retuned to school, friends, and life as I left it in June. To my surprise it was exactly the same. It’s been hard for me to grasp the fact that I had changed so much but everything else was still the same. For a while it felt like I had two lives. The life I created in Oregon this summer and life, as I know it in Missouri. It was hard for me to get home and not be able talk about inside jokes and memories from the summer. However, the great part is that I do have my All-Star family that I can text, call, tweet, or skype with now and relive those moments when need be. As my life is returning to normal I can’t help but be reminded of my summer.

When I boarded the plane and left for Oregon in June I knew my life would change. But I cannot even begin to tell you how much my All-Star summer impacted my life. I grew, learned, and experienced so much. I developed a sincere passion for child welfare issues. I made countless connections with people from all over the United States. The only problem I am facing now is what’s next? I am starting to speak and attend events in my state and am looking forward to continuing to do that throughout the next year. However, I am also facing the fact that I am a college senior and will quickly be facing the unknown. To be honest this does concern my a bit. Certain things I have prayed for so long are finally starting to happen and I couldn’t be more thrilled. Nevertheless, as these aspects in my life are starting to finally work out it complicates others. Trying to plan and anticipate what’s next literally makes me sick. So I am deciding not to worry bout it.

Granted I have until May(ish) to have things figured out I don’t feel that it is really in my hands. I am putting my faith in the Man upstairs and trusting that he knows what’s going on. I find that in times of uncertainty having faith always works out in my favor. In reflection, I cannot begin to express how blessed I feel to have had this opportunity. Chances are you have heard the saying “more than you bargained for” well, I think that basically sums my summer with 10acious 10! I am continuing to grow and learn each day and am looking forward to the future even more so now that I have additional family members to share it with.

Sep 19, 2010 By ashjack0808