The last year of my life has seen an incredible amount of personal growth. A year ago, I was a veritable young Bilbo Baggins, holed up at Bag End. I saw no one, went nowhere and generally did nothing. While I may have dreamed of Misty Mountains and grand adventures, the only kind that actually found their way to me were in books.
All of this changed the moment I met Kristy. In fact, the sheer act of our first meeting was a monumental display of courage on my part! I had to...gasp...leave my comfy hobbit hole! Perhaps it was the hand of some invisible Gandalf that brought it all about, but I have been living a much more public and much less sedentary life since we met.
Indeed, while there may be a few troublesome dwarves that keep knocking on the door of my life, dashing my neat and orderly "dishes" upon the floor of inconvenience, getting to spend time with the most incredible woman I've ever known has made it all entirely worth it. Maybe even more grand than all the adventuring, is that she has inspired me to take up my quill again, and set my thoughts to paper...or keyboard, as is more fitting.
I truly believe that God blessed me with the gift of thinking deeply, and writing is simply a vehicle for getting those deep thoughts out into the world for other like-minded hobbits to enjoy. While I was holed up in my comfort zone, I was not sharing my thoughts with many. It seemed that I was nicely wrapped up in the blanket of Fear. Fear of others' opinons, fear of others' disapproval...fear of my own ineptitude. It is the sign of a remarkable woman, that rather than strengthening my fears, she banished them with the light of Encouragement. Every day, Kristy reminds me that I'm a rather smart fellow, and she challenges me to one day attain to the level of HER intelligence. A feat, I must confess, that seems forever beyond my grasp.
So, this has been my yearlong journey, my "There and Back Again", so to speak. I've yet to reach Mount Erebor, and there is still a mighty red Wyrm to slay yet...but at least I'm on my way. I am no longer in a hole in the ground...