driftwood

June 28, 2012

It is a humbling thing to be in the middle of a cross-cultural training session as one who has “been there.” In many ways, I feel very ill-equipped to be an advisor here. But I must trust that what experience I have will be helpful for someone, somehow. And granted, I have been wrestling with issues that make my insecurities more prominent in my mind right now, due to this time of the year, and of my life.
Recently, as I spoke of some dreams I had for the next stage in my life, someone in my life who has been “settled” for quite some time voiced a concern. I have not lived near this person for a long time but have stayed in touch and visited periodically. They told me that they wondered why I would be considering moving to a new place after moving so much in the past. They wondered if I would wake up one day and realize that I had many friends acquaintances but no one consistently close to me.
Oh, how this hurt! I keep mulling over the words and feeling a wounding in my spirit. I am asking myself if this is true. When my heart aches for someone in my life, is it a shallow ache? Is my heart not really connected on a deep level? Are the relationships I develop with current housemates pointless, because they will end?
I think of all the people I said goodbye to at the end of this school year, and of the time invested into those relationships while I was with them . . . was that time wasted?
Oh Lord, may it not be so! My prayer now is that there might be hope for us wandering souls after all . . . Maybe?
Maybe, just maybe, God has a plan for those of us who have grown up so unsettled that we do not know how to sit tight and be still in one place.
Maybe, just maybe, I can have an eternal impact in others’ lives even if I do not spend the rest of my life with them: I know, for a fact, that people who have meant much to me remain influential in my daily life even once we are no longer in daily contact.
Maybe, just maybe, there is hope for one such as me . . .
Maybe some day I will settle down, in spite of how difficult that has been for me thus far.
Maybe it will be something not to fear, but will rather be a beautiful and seamless transition into a fulfilled life.
*This is a photo from my recent flight to visit my brother. As we flew, the pilot gave me interesting tidbits about the areas we passed. One of them was this bay that is completely filled with driftwood. I was struck by the sheer quantity of it at the time, and by how different it looked from an aerial perspective. Posting this writing today, I thought back to that driftwood and felt it somehow complemented my thoughts. In hopes that a driftwood life may turn into a different sort of tapestry when the pieces make a whole . . .

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