Monday, February 1, 2010

The Grace of Returning

It's certainly been awhile. I'm embarrassed to say that I forgot the log-in for google and haven't been able to access my account (I have created a couple of accounts over the years for various activities and was trying to log-in with the wrong one. In the middle of the night I remembered which password I needed for this one. Duh.)

A lot's changed. Honestly, I hadn't written for a long time because I was pretty intensely depressed. My job had become intolerable and I was miserable. Long story short, my former boss is a very dysfunctional person and a really terrible boss. I really loved almost everything about my job except anything that dealt with her. Just when I was to the point of accepting the idea that I would rather quit and be unemployed than continue to work in that environment, my former Regional Manager at the university social sciences research company I used to work for called me to offer me a job as a Field Manager. I said yes, filled out the paperwork and did a phone interview with 4 VPs and turned in my two week's notice. My last day at Vandy was a couple of weeks ago and I'm sorta just waiting for some notice about what work I can do until a project comes up that I can work on. I think I'll be working on a project beginning in March. Until then, I'm checking email several times a day hoping my Regional Manager finds something I can do to be helpful.

I'll be working from home so I've set up the workshop in the backyard to be my office. I had a phone line run out there. The building is unheated but I've got a little electric space heater and a kerosene heater and it's working out ok. Once the project begins I'll be salaried and will probably work 60-70 hours a week for the first month or more. The good thing is that I'm a morning person so I can get up at 5:00 and begin working, if I want to, so it won't cut into my time with the kids too much. I figure I'll work until 2:00, pick Carmac up, come home and supervise homework and make dinner, then go back to work for a couple of hours. I'll also probably work at least a couple of hours 7 days of the week.

As for "how does Spirit go in your life": I found depression and stress kept me in a state of emotional crisis in which I had little awareness of that of God within myself or in others (particularly my boss). I had no extra energy for much of anything beyond what was absolutely required--caring for my children, interacting positively with Hammy, family. I had no energy to be with friends or even to email or call people. If I hadn't been on Ministry and Council and a care committee at Nashville Friends Meeting, I probably wouldn't have gone to meeting much at all. As it has been, on weeks in which I didn't have a meeting I had to be at, I often didn't attend Meeting for Worship. I'd never thought of my relationship with God as being something extraneous to daily survival but it seems that spirituality is pretty high on Maslows hierarchy of needs, up there in the "self-actualization" point, for me anyway. A few weeks ago, reading a blog post on QuakerQuaker about the mysticism of connecting with God, I remembered the sense of "falling into" a gathered Meeting for Worship--that letting go and uniting with God and that of God in that state of expectant waiting. I remember but I'm far from there. But remembering creates the stir of longing, so maybe I'll be able to find my way back. I thank God for the grace of returning.


MB said...

Depression sucks (how profound!) For me, too, I've found it to be a big wall between me and my spiritual self. Things I thought were integral to my self fell by the wayside - quite a humbling experience. Not sure what the lesson is - maybe about forgiving self and others, maybe about the synergy of staying connected to God and staying connected to self. Anyhow, glad that "way has opened" and that you have been able to grab it. (though have to say, the hours wouldn't suit me) MB

Robin M. said...

I think it's interesting how often cycles of life are manifested in the blogosphere. Having written recently about the last phase of a spiritually dry period, I've noticed several in the last couple of weeks.

Welcome back!

Anonymous said...

This is amazing. I've been feeling something similar for months. Not sure why God or Spirit would have a use for me or were in my life, really. Puts quite the block in your life and mind and heart. Trying to hold onto the notion that my own mind shuts out God vs God just leaving me. I saw part of an old movie about Joan of Arc. She was blissfully praising God as the likelihood of burning at the stake loomed large. I lose faith so much more easily! Been doing a lot of journaling which has shed some light on my thinking.

Friendly Mama said...

It does seem interesting that one can feel so alone but later find one has been adrift in a boat in a lake filled with others who are also adrift. If only we'd yelled out "hallllooo" we might have found some comfort. But perhaps we needed to learn from our adriftedness.

I'm grateful that, I can't say it's my faith or just the composition of my being or what, when I'm having a crisis of spirit, I know it's me who's removed from God. I've never had cause to question where God has gone. I'm the inconsistant one in or relationship.
Now that is. Before I "found" God, I searched and searched for that burning bush never thinking to listen to the Voice in the silence.