You know how there are some days that you meet new people and everything seems to make sense again? I had been so secluded out here on the West side…30 miles from everywhere…and feeling kind of lost. I have my beautiful family, and my fun hobbies, and my darling husband, and my old, dear, cherished friends spread all over the world, but I was missing one mighty important facet in my near-complete life: Community. Some people have their church, some have their social circle, some have their neighborhood, but I have none of that.
My visit with Tracy in Sebastopol was inspiring. She talked about planting some roots by getting involved in her new community and really getting to know people so she didn’t feel like such a nomad. I have been carrying that around with me, wondering how I could apply a similar strategy. Working at home, having SO MANY children (odd constraint, but true) and not really needing to leave the house for much has even changed my personality, and not necessarily for the better. When Peter was young, I was involved in my neighborhood. That was easy, since I lived in such a vibrant place. Living in the suburbs is everything I feared. Sure, we have a beautiful backyard, and Peter can walk to and from school by himself, but it’s also taken me out of the neighborhood…the stores in town aren’t even open in the evenings, so it’s not worth the 2 mile trek with a reluctant stroller passenger after dinners. It’s so different. I’ve tried to be open to it, but this is a bedroom “community”, and not a vibrant, open, social one.
What I’m re-learning now is that community isn’t about location or schedules, social standing or common background as much as it is a truly shared goal. I feel like I’m starting to find that…and the goal is to create conditions in which enlightenment about living a purposeful life occurs. Creating an environment where people feel like it’s worth the risk to try something courageous.
I have made some wonderful new friends in Gregg and Angela through their business the Detroit Evolution Laboratory. Peter and I attended some cooking classes there, and Ella and I have since gone weekly to the City to pick up a healthy dose of nutrition and inspiration. How often in life are we fortunate to meet people who share similar beliefs and principles by chance? I am so awe-struck by their courage and their mission, and inspired by their loving kindness. They invited me to a beautiful event full of inspiring people on Sunday night and I cannot remember when I was more “at home” in a crowd of people I had never met.
I’m so thrilled to be on a journey where my prevailing thought is “what can I do to make a difference?”