I had made the decision to get involved with food and social justice....so now, where to begin? The time had come to, once again, embrace the unknown...
As I wrote in my June Newsletter, I want to to take a look at the "Practices of Pilgrimage," as outlined in Christine Valter Painter's, The Soul of a Pilgrim. These include:
1. The Practice of Hearing the Call and Responding.
2. The Practice of Packing Lightly.
3. The Practice of Crossing the Threshold.
4. The Practice of Making the Way by Walking.
5. The Practice of Being Uncomfortable.
6. The Practice of Beginning Again.
7. The Practice of Embracing the Unknown.
8. The Practice of Coming Home.
When I first went to Iona in 2012, I was stepping into another life. This was a life in which I didn't know who I was yet; I was the stranger. That was an ongoing theme throughout my time there as I was constantly introduced to new ways of thinking. When I returned to the states I was a stranger yet again because the person I had been was gone. I knew I wanted to help people...and make a living too...but didn't know how to proceed. Apparently all my new life experiences did not add up to enough for certain jobs...even if I could find a job that fit my eclectic résumé. I felt like a fish out of water.
I ended up going back to school for culinary arts and health coaching. Since graduating, I've become the stranger many times. Through new jobs, running, relationships, being a Northerner living in the South, opera chorus. My life keeps evolving, and I have decided to allow it room to breathe.
Embracing the unknown takes courage and the willingness to relinquish what you think your life should look like in favor of letting it take shape and loving it as it materializes. My life may not look like what I thought it would when I began to change it all back in 2012, but when I stop and really look, I am living the dream. All the little pieces keep fitting together in the most random ways.
When I left Scotland this past May I had a renewed passion for food and social justice issues. I felt the fire rekindled and the strangeness approaching once again. Even though I wasn't sure where to start, I hadn't felt that kind of excitement in a long time and it was bliss.