|Director: Kay Pollak|
Monday, January 2, 2012
Wintery Mix, Finally!
Happy New Year! Well, Milwaukee has finally found our way into some wintery weather. It has been a long time since we experienced real snow (at least two seasons have passed) and tonight it looks like the grass is beginning to have its white, fluffy coat again. I hope it stays for a while!!!
Last week was a time of catching-up and preparing for 2012...if you can really prepare for the new year. After Christmas I headed down to East Chicago, IN for a three day retreat. On the way down I called two of my Sisters from the community to meet for lunch. It was a great send-off for the days ahead. I was not thinking I wanted the silence as much as I did when the reservations were made for this retreat. Wow, did I find out that I was wrong about that. As I entered into the space the tiredness of the last semester became apparent. It was time for much rest, prayer and shared reflection. On the first night I spent time watching the Swedish film As it is in Heaven and it set the tone for the days. It is all about a man's journey through love while discovering who he is in the process. It is a great film and the acting is superb. It helped me to reflect on some of the ways love has materialized in my life, particularly through teaching and community. Both of these things bring me to greater authenticity and joy. And, also challenge me to open my heart more to the presence of others. There are days when my ego blows up all over the place and my life becomes vicki-centric (likely more days than not) and these last few years the awareness of that reality has become more apparent (yech). When my relationships are only about me it creates a barrier that is beginning to cause me discomfort...I guess because it lacks authenticity. In the film the main character, Daniel, only begins to experience love as he peals away the layers of restraint that confine his life. While working through his own challenges he is invited to help a Church choir organize and grow in their singing ministry. Ultimately he the choir through liberated expressions of the creative life through his gifts as a musical composer and director. The life within himself is unexpected and rich with surprises. Tonight as this reflection occurs it seems like my aspirations are shifting as, like Daniel, my measure of success changes toward love rather than approval. And, according to the strength of the vicki-centric self this will offer me plenty of work to touch back on over time.