There's a difference between what things were like between college and getting the job (we'll call it winter, for the sake of the season metaphor) and now. It's something I want to look at.
During winter, my situation was always difficult in some way (that is a relative term). At home I lived twenty minutes from town and half an hour from work; my hours were different from my Dad's so we weren't home at the same time too often. I did have my old friends while there, though; that helped.
Then I moved to Staunton; because it was such a big change, I thought winter would be over. I was wrong; working long hours in a town where you only know the family you live is tough. Big change, but not much change. The church I attended for several months was wonderful, but was shorter on peers than my hometown church had been.
That time was tough. There were some good times to be had with people, but there was a lot of loneliness and frustration. With my career, it was tough to believe I was really moving toward; once I was in Staunton, the long hours butted into everything else. I was largely dedicated just to working just to get somewhere; it was draining.
Through it all God helped me keep my head above the water emotionally. There were very dark days; plenty of emotional lows from feeling lonely (justifiably or not), and I lost one of my jobs right after signing a lease and spent all of January eating my savings and job hunting. January was especially tough. There were quite a few days I spent in a heap on the floor. As much as I could, I stayed in the Word and in prayer every day. I would not have lasted as long without being connected to God, as I was deprived of so much that gave me energy: pursuing things I love and being around people I know. It was tough; it was different. I read some, but not a lot. I did not have the energy. Perhaps I could have; no matter, now.
What I do know is that this new season will be different. It already is, even though there's still snow on the ground in some places. Perhaps a few snowmen will last a little longer than the icy ground around them. The church I'm attending has some great people of all ages; now, I need to get to know them. That will take time, like everything else. I want to be involved at church too, in serving and in ministry.
So much to move forward in.
This is a retrospective and a guess at the future. Things are good.