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I feel like a girl from outer space.

It’s the middle of the night and I have a bad case of asthma due to a cold. I am nebulizing- which means attempting to breathe in vaporized medicine. I’ve been doing this since I was diagnosed with asthma as a little girl. There’s a weird mask-thing that fits over my nose and mouth. It has two breathing holes for when I exhale and the plastic is various shades of green- all of which add to the feeling that I am an alien.

My cat-–Lulu–is at the foot my bed. Her ears are flattened a bit and are swiveling in annoyance; she doesn’t like the loud sound of the nebulizer machine. She’s been putting up with this ever since we got her when I was six or so.

Whenever I exhale, vapor comes out of the breathing holes on the mask and rises in front of my face. When I cough the vapor comes out in bursts then soon disappears into thin air. Lulu has given up on being annoyed; she curls up among the blankets once more. Mom says Lulu has missed me a lot–my whole family has missed me.

I’ve missed them too. I’ve officially decided that the Shantra house is ‘home’ and my dorm in Edens Hall is my ‘fort.’ I’m off fighting the intellectual battles required to gain my bachelor’s degree, pushing my brain to its limit. There are plenty of adventures up North in the Land of Bellingham, not the least of which is trying to not get lost finding my way to classes every day. Last quarter it took me near to the last week to find my classrooms without the aid of my wilted sticky-note in my pocket. I’m hoping this quarter I won’t get lost so much.

Sometimes I feel like an alien on campus. Even with organizations like Campus Christian Fellowship and small groups like Core, I still end up feeling like an alien at the secular university. But didn’t Jesus say we would be aliens and strangers on this earth? I like being a Jesus freak and an alien though; Christ has saved me and I know that I am no longer of this world.

My nebulizer is now done, I turn it off. My hands are a bit shaky; the medicine always does that to them. The need to cough my lungs out is somewhat gone though, so in that sense I feel much better. It will be nice to one day be in heaven; it will be Home, and I will no longer have any more asthma.