I don't know what's coming
but I know it's going to be good
Today I woke up and thought, “hmm, I should wash my backpack!”, so that’s exactly what I did.
I bought my little backpack in 2017 from my friends, who literally handmade it. Since then I have used it for the most random trips — from National Parks, to mountains, lakes, my favorite coffee shops, good (and bad) Christian conferences, and so many other places in between. Sometimes my little backpack is all I would take on my trips and I don’t actually know how I did that because I am so high maintenance now.
As I hand-washed the fabric this afternoon it took only but seconds for the combination of soap and water to let me know I should’ve washed my little backpack a long time ago. Something about the process was so therapeutic and I couldn’t help but think of how this was the literal baggage I carried for almost 5 years.
As the water became dirtier I thanked my backpack for all the adventures we went on together and how it protected everything I carried in there.
Five years is a long time to faithfully carry everything I put in there, yet in this moment there was nothing else in it, just cleansing water, and here I am with a metaphor, right?
I thought of all the things I have emptied out from the last 5 years. My first ever relationship and first ever real broken heart. The first time I held hands with a man. The first time I let someone kiss me how I wanted to be kissed. I thought of all the tears I left in all the journals my backpack carried. I emptied out the times I was triggered at church. I emptied out the battle of not ever belonging anywhere. I emptied out the good things and the bad things because now I get to decide what comes with me on my next trip.
My little backpack will never be its original color, truly we have been through mountains and valleys together (thanks to the state of California!), through extreme hot weather and the coldest night I have ever experienced (in Kansas City that one time after a Zach Winters concert!). And honestly, I don’t want it to be the same color as when it was brand new because now she too carries the stories I carried, and I always want to be the person who is changed by stories.
The day I can no longer be changed by stories, I will know that my heart needs to come back to the secret places my little backpack and I have been to. The places where Spirit is.
So my little backpack and I will continue to be changed, and continue to adventure together. This might be our biggest year yet. So in the words of Johnnyswim, “I don’t know what’s coming, but I know it’s going to be good!”.