Hello, hello! I’m back! It’s been a crazy couple of weeks (or has it been a month at this point?). In the midst of all this time that has passed, I’ve gone to DC for business, attended my sister’s wedding and the subsequent emotional wringer, dealt with the stress of both grandmothers going in and out of the hospital multiple times within two weeks space, got new exciting projects at work, got another part-time job that I’m super-excited about, and I’ve suddenly discovered myself on the precipice of a career that accidentally found me. Mind-blowing stuff.
Meanwhile, how have I fared spiritually in the midst of all this wonderful (and sometimes not so wonderful) chaos? Coming out of this tunnel, I am pleasantly surprised. My desire to seek more meaning and mindfulness and peace seems to be earnest and will stick around. And part of this, I think, is due to the Chalice Circle that I’ve started attending at the local UU church.
This is a lovely group of people who willing chose to gather together once every two weeks in order to reflect on deeper subjects and to discuss them in a safe space. We’ve only had two sessions, and I am astonished at how comfortable I feel sharing things in this group (well, that’s relative – I’m not really ever comfortable talking in a group). And I am also astonished at how wonderful this group is. I came to yesterday’s meeting energized, buzzing with excitement and stress, and over the course of the two hours, I slowly wound down, found my center and grew calm. It was astounding. It was beautiful.
Also beautiful is the covenant that our Chalice Circle decided on. I think it accurately reflects all the different voices in our group and all the different paths we have walked and are currently on.
- Welcome laughter and humor.
- Honor silence.
- Value all emotions that arise.
- Trust in each other’s best intentions.
- Respect the need for distance.
- Respect confidentiality; share only if you have permission.
- Have patience with ourselves and one another.
Isn’t that just beautiful? When I was thinking about our covenant prior to that first meeting, I was thinking about the usual stuff about respecting each other’s feelings, don’t tell secrets, no mocking, et cetera, et cetera. But this…this establishes a sacred space which honors both the positive and the negative without valuing either above the other. “All emotions” – not just the laughter but also the tears and the hard stuff. “The need for distance” – god, this is a crucial one. Nobody has to feel like they are being forced into this intimacy – it’s about being safe enough to request space and respecting other people’s need for it.
These are such beautiful, simple rules…