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Posts Tagged ‘bonding’


In March of 2012 I wrote about connecting with people. How by some mysterious force, we are drawn to someone and find a connection. I’ve had a couple of new experiences in this past year, in spite of my limited movements within the outside world.

An old business associate of nearly 40 years, turned friend, emailed me about an alumnus of her college. Did I want to meet her? She had recently moved to my town, shared my religion and knew no one here. She wanted to get involved in her new community and my friend thought we would hit it off. I trust this friend; she knows me well. So of course I said yes. Explaining to this stranger my limited outings, unpredictable medical limitations and inability to eat like a normal person, I suggested lunch at my house. Conversation came easily and we discovered some additional mutual friends and interests. We share political views so there was much fodder for conversation and potential action. The relationship quickly turned into a familiar, comfortable friendship, one I am so grateful for.

On another occasion, the search for someone to do alterations led me to a woman from a neighboring town. She is the mother of a lady in my town, who I know only through the Facebook page our town’s ladies belong to. She was kind enough to come to my house so I could try on the clothes. There was something special about her and she felt the same. She too joined me for lunch soon after and I have been to her home to drop off or pick up more things she has sewed for me. We are on a “hug and kiss greeting” basis and express an affinity for one another like we’ve been friends for so long.

My therapist tells me I am blessed with the ability to make friends easily. I would have to agree. But I attribute it to my father and his mother who also had many friends due to their ability to talk to anyone about something they could find in common.

My life is so enriched by this gift. Some people’s involvement in my life have endured decades and many challenges; some have come and gone in short order. I’ve relished each friendship for its uniqueness and rich dimension they have brought to my life.

I’m a lucky woman.

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Last week, I christened my studio with an official workshop. My colleague and I hosted five women who were in transition or looking to be. What struck me is that each was in a very different place in life, yet they shared a bond of wanting to know what’s next.

One woman spent her entire career as a prosecutor, working long hours. Though she loves her work, she is restless and thinking of her next act. Another, having reached an age at which she can retire comfortably, is exploring whether she wants to move away from the area, near a good friend. Her grown children live here, but there are no grandchildren tugging at her heartstrings to stay. Another, in the final stages of divorce, is wondering what her next chapter will be, and when love will re-enter her life. One woman has been struggling with a family member’s prolonged illness and the emotional and financial fallout it has caused. She remains remarkably optimistic, yet her face shows the strain. Another, a homemaker, is sending her eldest off to college. While she still has a number of years looking after he younger child, she is beginning to imagine her life when he too goes off to college. She is anxious to explore and express her dormant creativity.

My co-leader and I have only fairly recently met, but there was an instant bond. We share a love of learning, eternal curiosity, and a deep restlessness. So we know and share these women’s pain and hope.

The interesting thing is that given a common challenge, women will bond. No matter from what walk of life or current situation, they will allow themselves to share with each other, in order to grow. An even more interesting and wonderful thing, is that by helping other people explore freely, connect and share, I grow too. I will never cease to be amazed by the strength and resilience of the women who cross my path. They leave a mark on my soul.

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