‘Change’ is my summer theme

I have a love/hate relationship with change. Change rips the blanket off of me right when I get cozy. It turns my world upside down and makes me question everything I know.

And sometimes change brings me to a place better than I could have dreamed of. It surprises me and makes me excited about the future.

My life has been full of change during the past month. On May 20, I packed up and moved to the Nash­ville area for the summer, and since then, I’ve adjusted to a lot of new things.

Every day has presented a new adventure, so here’s a peek at what I’ve been doing in Tennessee:

1. Interning. The ultimate reason I’m here this summer is because I have this awesome opportunity to learn and develop my skills while working for a great cause. Show Hope has been incredible.

At first, I was pretty nervous about my internship. I didn’t know what to expect and didn’t know if my abilities would be good enough. But the people are so kind and they all truly care about their work. The atmosphere in the office is fun and relaxed, and I love coming into work every day.

I work four days a week for about five hours each day. During that time, I write blog posts and work on projects for the communications team. I’m learning about communications from a non-profit standpoint and gaining insight on orphan care and the orphan crisis.

2. Living in the city. Technically, I’m living in the suburbs. Franklin, Tenn., is about 20 miles south of Nashville and is the cutest town ever. It has a population of almost 70,000, so even though it has a small-town charm, there are lots of people here—especially for a girl coming from a town of about 3,000.

Lots of people means lots of restaurants and stores. There are so many coffee shops and cafes I want to try, and it’s hard to refrain from spending money all of the time.

So far, I have checked out a few of the highly recommended coffee and ice cream shops around the area, including Frothy Monkey, The Well, The Good Cup, Kilwins and Sweet CeCe’s. I’m developing quite the list of favorite places, so if you ever find yourself in Nashville, I’ll let you know where to go!

3. Staying with a host family. My friend Kristen and I are staying with host families this summer, which has been a new experience for us both.

Kristen’s family is so much fun; they have adorable 4-year-old triplets who are incredibly energetic. I love spending time with their family and playing with the kids—they help me not miss my sweet cousins back home quite as much.

My host family situation has been quite the journey. I initially moved into a house with a woman who lived about a 30-minute drive away from Franklin. We agreed that I’d keep looking for a closer place, and I found one for the month of July.

I still needed somewhere for June, though, so I sent another message to a woman Kristen and I met during our spring break trip to Nash­ville. She and her husband have welcomed me into their home for the month of June and have been such a blessing to me already.

Their house is less than five minutes away from Kristen’s, and less than 10 minutes from Show Hope. I’ve loved being able to join their family for the month and look forward to getting to know the family I’ll be living with in July.

4. Being social. I’m an introvert to the core. So making friends and being social has definitely been one of the most challenging adjustments for me. Kristen and I have attended a few Bible studies and have gotten to know some of the other summer interns at Show Hope.

So far, some of the fun adventures we’ve had include movies at the park in Nashville, the CMA Fest, celebrity book signings (Sadie Robertson and Shawn Johnson), the Nashville Flea Market, and hiking at Radnor Lake.

Nashville is so full of fun opportunities, so we’re using our free time wisely and taking every opportunity that comes our way.

Bailey Kaufman attends Tabor College. She can be reached at baileykaufman@tabor.edu.

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