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Night by Night

Last night I cut nearly all my hair off (or at least, I paid someone to cut nearly all my hair off). I haven’t worn it this short since high school, or maybe freshman year of college. That’s 10 years ago! After a decade of hairstyles reaching my shoulders, if not longer, it was awfully strange to have nothing to grab at the back of my head while I washed my hair in the shower this morning. It felt like I was washing someone else’s hair. But it’s mine, and I am actually loving the new, easy-doesn’t-begin-to-describe-it cut and all the compliments it’s garnered thus far. It’s fun to keep track of the adjectives people choose when they notice the drastic change I made.

Tomorrow night I shall roll my packed suitcase out the door and hit the road. I’ll only drive as far as my parents’s house in the U.P. but early the next morning my mom and I are scheduled to depart for Traverse City, MI. The Traverse City region happens to be one of my favorite places to visit, with its bays, beaches, sand dunes, cherry orchards and boutique shops. It is also the setting for The Mercy Hour. Mom and I will do our best to strike a balance between chilling out and researching the book’s setting during our four days there. Prediction: I will be inclined to stay.

Of course the approaching journey means tonight is to be dedicated to filling that suitcase and readying to leave as soon as I finish work tomorrow. The little more than a day standing between me and my road trip just feels extra. Expendible. Such days can be annoying if I’m caught up in the spirit of anticipation, but with a tweaked attitude they can instead become a worthy challenge. Maybe it’s yet another sign that I need to learn how to chill, but I enjoy taking what feels like an expendible day and changing it into the opposite: a day of accomplisments and enjoyment. The expendible day is tailor made for all those little tasks I have put off, for crossing lines off the to-do list, for praying for all those people who asked for my prayers, for watching that movie I have wanted to watch, for calling that friend I meant to call sooner, for reading a book, for driving over to the adoration chapel, and for (of course) writing. I don’t know that I’ve ever met an expendible day I didn’t change into something else by the time it ended.

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