In the circle, between two borders
I spent the last two days at the Jericho House in Wainfleet, Ontario with twelve women on retreat. There so many things that I did that were new to me:
– I wrote a poem called a French Pantoum
– I sat on an adirondack and watched waves and waves of geese bark their way to the lake
– I listened to a story much like mine and did not insert myself into it
– I listened to a woman describe for well over twelve minutes how I could get a “Canada 150” t-shirt in wonder instead of frustration
– I opened a beautiful new blank journal and wrote in it without consider whether or not I was worthy of its beauty
– I thought about Canadian women, how smart they are and how they knew all kinds of things about the states, including very precise locations and all I know is Toronto, Niagara Falls, Montreal, Vancouver and nothing in between except Whistler which in the middle somewhere, I’m not sure where
– I listened to a CD all the way through laying on my bed with my eyes closed, listening to every word intently (I am sure I have done that in my lifetime, I am just not sure when. Maybe Dan Fogelberg in the late 70’s)
– and, of course, I learned new things about me through the metaphor of doors and thresholds.
It is good to cross a border. It is good to be in a foreign land among strangers. It is good to tell stories, to ask questions, to let your own words speak to and inform you. It is good to draw. It is good to be silent. It is good to narrow the tragic gap between who we are and who we might want to be. It is good to find companionship. It is good to receive love doing absolutely nothing but telling truth in a triad. It is good to say to your soul, here – this is time I want to spend with you.
“I always feel comfortable when I am in Sue’s presence. Sue is a caring, compassionate person with whom I trust the information I have given her. For me, each visit has been a meaningful and rewarding experience.” ( female directee)
“Sue and I have been meeting for over a year. I have explored my youth and adult years. I can finally express my true feelings. Sue has a special way of making a person feel comfortable and relaxed. It has been a new beginning to look at my life experiences through the lens of nature and spirituality. I have the confidence to be myself.” (male directee)
“Sue demonstrates excellent facilitation skills. She has a wonderful style which creates space for people to share openly. As a leader Sue models open questions and a rich inner life. Her spirituality brings a depth and a strength to her as a person and as a facilitator. Sue’s passion and leadership of small groups creates an incredible opportunity for each participant.” ( minister at the United Church of Canada where Sue is an active leader of small groups)