“I wish you were still posting as often as you did while in Europe,” remarked a friend on my last post. From our high school days, she’s a faithful reader, often offering thoughtful, evocative and kind comments.
“So do I,” was my response.
But I’ve been at a loss for words as I’ve struggled to reconcile how to re-orient myself at work, having been told several weeks back, “we don’t get to do the work we love anymore.”
I was struck deeply dumb by that remark. Having predicated my entire career on the notion that “work is love made visible,” (Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet) how do I proceed? I’d made a fairly accurate forecast that this re-turn would most likely mean the end of a career-long run in “writing my own ticket,” creating my work, developing competencies in response to, and in anticipation of emerging shifts and need. And I know I’ve been blessed beyond to have had the opportunity, space, privilege and yes, moxie, to do this and to work with people I appreciate and enjoy, supporting them while doing what I loved. My work-life-work was my love made visible. Now, my portfolio is filled with assignments, most of which have little connection to each other or me, and all of which are no choice of my own.
So I find myself in the midst of this curious paradox…
We talk a lot about authenticity…of engagement, leading, learning. I’m trying to find this in my work. After a few weeks of searching, it finally dawned on me. This time around, it has little if anything to do with what I do. Now it has most everything to do with who I am and how I bring the “I am that I am” into this changed context.
So obvious. So fundamental. And yet in the midst of it all, I lost this essential. An essential underpinning for me, and as I scan the events in our world, for all of us. (Just today I read kindred spirit, Julie Daley’s recent post. Inspired by a teacher to us both, Margaret Wheatley, her insights echo.)
Now I’m re-framing, and “re-remembering” to make love visible, in the everyday moments of my life…
An autumn walk where I’m dazzled by roses still budding and blooming, crimson crab apples hanging from still green-leaved branches, amur maples leaves blazing against a backdrop profusion of pink geraniums.
The first fall pot of Sunday soup, this time black bean and ham from last week’s Thanksgiving dinner…a Silver Palate recipe classic.
In a week’s time, hosting my first “Painting From Within” process painting workshop, an offering that has definitely struck a chord in the field given the interest and registrations, and that fills me with easeful joy as I make preparation.
An evening of good food, good music, and good conversation with intelligent, vibrant, wise and beautiful women friends who know how to hold heartful space for each other as we courageously venture forth to realize our dreams. The next morning, each of us basking in the “afterglow,” each sending to the others our emails of appreciation, I received the following quote from one’s early morning reflection:
“Look at every path closely and deliberately.
Try it as many times as you think necessary.
Then ask yourself, and yourself alone…
Does this path have a heart?
If it does, the path is good.
If it doesn’t, it is of no use.” — Carlos Castaneda
Love made visible, I bring heart to the path, wherever it takes me.