the summer of being-with

This has been the summer of being-with. Being with my children.

Being with my husband.

I planned it that way on purpose.  My nest is emptying, and I want it to empty well.

The best way I know, to do things well, is to spend time together and build connection.

So being-with has been Priority 1 all summer long:  to laugh together, to be in awe of beauty together, to work on projects together, to have important conversations together.

To celebrate the now, to wear around the truth that we can still be connected, even when  we don't live in the same household any more.

To get a glimpse of what lies ahead besides uncertainty and goodbye.

Today, 10 days before college move-in day, this prayer of St. Augustine resonates with me:

I behold how some things pass away that others may replace them, but Thou dost never depart, o God, my Father, supremely good.  Beauty of all this beautiful, to Thee I will entrust whatsoever I have received from Thee, and so I shall lose nothing.

But in the summer of being-with, there's also a sense of waiting for the quiet that will come at the end of summer.  When we drive back up the trail of tears (aka I-35), when the new uniforms are donned, and the front door slams, and it's me and the dogs again, most days.

I have a feeling that I'm going to need what Anne Morrow Lindbergh says:

Sinking down through the upper layers of articulateness--leaving them behind--through thoughts--through emotions--down to where everything is dark and still and formless.  I feel I must sink to the bottom of the well before I can be renewed or creative again.

Because, while it's been a great summer, and pretty much the summer I planned and hoped for, it's also been an extrovert's summer, all this being-with.

And at the end of it all, I'm looking forward to another kind of being-with.

Being with me.

I need to be with myself.  

To be still.  To breathe.  To listen to love.

To process things in the ways that make sense uniquely to me.

And in the end, to be grateful for all I have received, and to trust for the goodness yet to be.

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