Mar 9, 2011

Prodrigal Friend

Don't need no fatted pig. Just one smile is all it takes.

Back from my second work trip in 3 weeks, I was just bursting at the seams to see my family. But of course Greyhound was late, leaving only a quick reconnect time before dinner. Then a sleepless night fretting and writing about insecurities and feelings of exclusion - basically a rehash of Men Need Not Apply and Measuring Friends, so I won't actually print last night's rave here. Then the planned calm morning of family snuggles usurped by the still-birth of a calf that had to be taken care of.

It all added up to arriving late at the school parking lot feeling alone and frazzled and lost. Breathless, breakfastless and unprepared for a full work day, I trudged head-down through the pouring rain to quickly take care of some week-old school business. And there she was, my angel of the morning.

She didn't know I was in a spiral. Didn't know I was needing a touch. She just saw I was back and quickly gave a warm welcoming smile that made me feel wanted and Seen. Just a simple, real, personal drive-by smile was enough to dispel all those clouds and send me back into the rain grinning like Gene Kelly.

Next morning there were no barnyard tragedies so we got there early enough for our usual social scene. There I found a parking lot full of friends all surprisingly aware that I've been away and wonderfully happy to see me back. I just hope I track peoples' lives and hold them half as well as I feel held today.

I feel so blessed to be in a community where connection is that easy to maintain, and needs so easy to express and have met. If we're feeling left out, all we have to do is show up and join in. The world is always there - it's up to us to be part of it.

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