There is a particular place in my hometown where I go to just be. I call it my “spot.” I’ve shared it with just a few people and those people are my closest and dearest friends and family members. It is a place that is hidden by the commercial and residential areas of Historic Roswell. It is unknown land, from my observations, to most Roswellians due to the lack of human trace (i.e. litter, dog poop, or foot prints embedded in the sand). The spot is creekside and I can rock hop, wade in the fresh water, sunbathe on my favorite rock, watch Blue interact with the water bugs, or just sit. But no matter what I do there, when I leave I always feel refreshed. It’s kind of like the feeling of a long shower after a busy day of work or school and a work-out or a run. That shower water is at the perfect temperature. It’s like every drop of water is washing away the imperfections of that day or impurities of your life that bring struggle upon you. That is how I feel when I leave the spot.
Well, I’m back in Knoxville for what will hopefully be my last semester of graduate school! I had a long, emotional roller coaster ride of a break back at home in Roswell, GA. I think I was at home for at least a month! All that is to say I was not necessarily excited about coming back to Knoxville. After reflection and talks with great friends, I’ve come to realize that I don’t have a spot in Knoxville like I have a spot in Roswell. Some of my favorite places are the dog park right around the corner from my city apartment, the local coffee shop (where I have what seems to be an endless tab), a neighborhood parallel to the Tennessee River that is great for going on a run or a walk. However, as meaningful and unique as those places are, they are too busy or overcrowded. I can’t seem to “get my mind right” no matter how hard I try.
So, this semester I’m going to take time to find my “spot” in Knoxville. It’s never too late, especially when it’s at the expense of feeling genuine joy. It’s important to have a special place where I can go and really be at peace. I want to challenge you to know that place and trust in that place. When you go there, open your heart, be quiet, and listen. I hope I can do the same.