Hi friends! I’m writing to you from my desk at home, listening to the rain pitter patter against my window. It’s the first dreary day we’ve had in over a week, and for the first time in months, I’m actually welcoming the rain. It means I don’t have to feel guilty for not playing outside! 🙂
It’s a bittersweet week – my fellowship at Seattle Children’s Hospital is ending, and today is my last day in the outpatient clinic. We’ll wrap up the quarter in less than two weeks, I’ll graduate from the School of Public Health in early June, and then I’ll finish my last 10-week rotation of my entire program in August.
Switching gears a little bit: the impetus for starting my first blog in 2007 (“Lauren’s Road Less Travelled”) was to create an online space to document my adventures while I was studying abroad. In today’s post, I hope to channel my 19-year-old self again and share a behind-the-scenes post of my life here in Seattle. I’ve taken all of these pictures in the last 3-4 weeks, and I can’t help but share some of Seattle’s stunning backdrops.
It’s always easier to share more challenging periods of our lives in retrospect. My close friends and family will remember that February and March of this year were tough. It was the first time since moving to Seattle that I decided I wanted to leave. I started to resent the ‘Seattle Freeze’ and hated the dark, grey, winter skies and rain (side note: this was the rainiest winter in 122 years.) I was also mentally exhausted from working almost every day for 18 months straight.
What I didn’t realize as a new Seattleite is that summers are sacred. You don’t leave Seattle in the summer because it’s far too beautiful, and it’s the only reason we put up with our crappy, rainy, (depressing), winters.
Despite ample warning from my program director, I didn’t give myself a summer last year. Some of you may remember – I worked 50-60 hour weeks at my job(s) and on my thesis. And while it was absolutely worth it professionally, it didn’t leave a lot of room for relaxing and fun.
The past month in Seattle has been beautifully sunny, with temperatures ranging from high 50’s – low 70’s. For the first time in months, I feel ALIVE. My soul and heart are so content, and I’ve fallen in love with Seattle again.
My roommates and I were reflecting on the moments in life that stop us in our tracks – those moments when nothing matters but the present – when we’re filled with an abundance of peace and gratitude. Those moments happen when I’m watching a sunrise or sunset, by the water, hiking through the mountains, and taking deep breaths of fresh air.
This summer will be filled with bike rides, roller blading, stand up paddle boarding, camping, hiking, walks (and runs!) around Green Lake, campfires, 24-hour urban adventures, music festivals, outdoor bootcamp, yoga, and so much more.
As my graduate program comes to an end, this summer feels like a rare and unique opportunity to really live in the moment. To take advantage of a more flexible schedule, more days off, and a checklist of commitments that will end in just a few weeks. I have so much gratitude for the life I’ve built here: my friendships, professional connections, and the opportunities to learn and grow. I want to tie this summer into a box and remember it forever.
Many people have commented that I seem ‘really happy’ right now. And the honest truth is that I am really happy right now. But just a reminder: I still have my moments, as we all do. So, thank you for reading, and for the opportunity to share a little more of this messy, beautiful, and elevated life that I’m living. Cheers to summer. XO
Looking for some of my favorite places to eat, drink, and “do” in Seattle? Check out this page!