Wednesday, June 8, 2011

A Summer of Stability

I must have missed the memo about having a major life change this summer.  There seems to be more people in my life than I can count moving away from Indianapolis to start new jobs (important people, not just mere "chat, have fun and forget-about-them-friends...). My sister started her "grown-up" life in Findlay, Ohio. Two of my best friends from high school are skipping to Michigan for a better job opportunity.  My dear friend, now DR. DAVE, is moving to Nashville to start his residency program.  The list goes on and on.

And in the meantime, I just signed a contract stating I would stay in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis schools for another seven years working on my masters and paying off that loan by "serving" the Catholic schools here.

Serving?? I'm tempted to think of this like a ball and chain!

The Benedictine Sisters here (and probably everywhere, although I haven't researched that) take, along with other vows, a vow of stability.  When I first heard that in high school, I thought that was kind of posh--a little too easy.  Staying where you've always lived?  I mean, come on!

But here I am, living in the same place I've lived my whole life (minus those four years in Evansville) and I'm finding that the challenge is embracing the fact that others are leaving YOU, not that you are leaving them.  That transition of moving to a new place and finding your people and your places is a struggle for anyone.  And the transition is also a struggle for the people who stay in the same place!

A wise man once said to me in college, "The truest friends are those who pack your bags for you even if they don't know why you are leaving."  I've had enough life experiences to know that distance and even the amount of time spent together doesn't determine a friendship.  "Friendship" is simply loving someone enough to want all of their happiness--in whatever path they choose!

One of the most beautiful memories I have from a trip to Haiti two years ago was a moment where we were playing Euchre, and, right there, in the middle of the hand, one guy so genuinely says to the other, "Joe, I hope you get everything you want out of life."  We all laughed, of course, at how random that was but....What a beautiful expression of a true friendship that does not possess anything for itself!

I'm getting my practice this summer of how to truly affirm another's path and trusting the beauty of the present moments!