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BACK TO THE FUTURE: Mission House and the Taster Week-End.

Already one year since I first came to the Mission House. I remember when I arrived, the first to welcome me on the diaconie stairs was our Dear Harold; since then Him & I have a very special link (it is probably me more than him, he is a VERY independent cat after all). I was really excited about coming for the taster week-end, meet everybody that I will share the year with and have the opportunity to meet the ones that are already experiencing it, have a sneak peak of the projects and enjoy the house and its beautiful garden. Back then, we had together our very first volleyball game, barbecue and of course boat trip through Amsterdam canals. It was the beginning of an amazing adventure. I left Amsterdam even more excited about coming to spend 10 months being part of the Mission House.

And here we go again, like a déjà vu my taster week-end 2.0, but this time from the other side. We welcomed this week-end the eight new lucky ones and their house leader for the coming year : Maren ( this name might also ring a bell to you, and that would be because you remember her from last year, isn’t it?). having them through the week-end made me rethink about all that time that now had passed since then. And I choose not to tell you directly about what happened this week-end but to write my thoughts about what had been/is Mission House for me, and this week-end had bring up in my mind.

I remember so clearly when the previous MHers said that we needed to make the most of our year from the beginning because the time flies, ten months goes as if it was last week. Now I really understand what they meant. Only one month left but September seems so close.

During our first week-end, we had to draw ourselves with a collage expressing our roots, our fears, our strengths, our dreams and what we love. Since then it has been hanging in my room and I have been looking at it from time to time and making/seeing the changes that happened. If I have to do it again today, I will be presenting myself from another perspective. It is strange how in this short but intense time things can change, how you grow as an individual. I have learn so much about myself but also about humanity and the meaning of life thanks and with all the people that I had the chance to meet in my projects, in our house, in Amsterdam itself. Some things that you believe are made in stone don’t last forever if you are willing to open your mind to the possibilities that surround you. Things that you see as granted might not be and will at some point challenge you, and be a key point in your life.

This winter, one of the attraction of the light festival was saying : “Be the change that you want to see in the world.’’. I am keeping this thought in my mind and try to act towards it in my daily life routine, even if it is not always that easy to see what could be change or to do so. One of my goals when I arrived was to be able to express my feelings more and to open myself to others. I made, I believe so, it is of course a life time process, enormous progress in this area by sharing more of what is in my mind, how I feel and what are my thoughts. By the way, isn’t what I am trying to do now? I will keep working on this but this year helped me make the first step.

These last months in Amsterdam have been incredibly intense for me, even if it was not the first time for me that I was living in another country or in a house with other people. But these year was not simply for me about sharing a house but about sharing our lives. It is not that easy to actually live together in the full extent of that concept. Being able to care about each other and take care of each other, by not only spend together or dealing with household duties, but by taking an active interest and role in each other journey in life, is an incredible step forward in growing up as a person. Having the possibility to experience this with my fellow MHers was/is amazing and it would not be the same and I can’t imagine doing it without one of them. Each one of us bring something so unique and special to our group that a piece would be missing in our crazy puzzle. Can you imagine that one year ago, those were complete strangers to me and now they occupy such an important place in time line?

I had also this week the opportunity to think about what choice I made this year and what bring me here. Kees-Jan joined us to share with us a zinmoment, which the topic was “sacrifice” and made me take a look back on all these crossroads moments in my life these last months how I reacted to them  and my state of mind. When did I stand up for myself, when did I put others needs first, what had been my priorities and how did I make them ? To all of these questions, the answer that I could give to myself make me even more confident in how beneficial this year had been for me.

Now, it is time for me to think about the future, what will be coming next for me but also to enjoy my last month in Mission House. These will be my last words and would like to finish by saying how grateful and glade I am of being part of Mission House Story.