Wednesday, October 18, 2017


When I was looking around today I saw the many with emptiness in their eyes and weariness in their hearts. We are nearing the end and I thought I would feel more joy.

Two instructors lead us in a debriefing for our community outreach/capstone project. Many students spoke up today and I listened and listened and listened. I wanted to speak so badly, yet I only remained quiet. I listened over and over again to each individual’s story. While unique to each person I could hear something universal in what was being said by our cohort.

In my silence, I learned that we were all in pain and through our own pain we inadvertently hurt others. Time was running out and we were nearing the end of the class and many students already had begun to leave. I didn’t know what it was or why at the time- but some compelling force was holding me there and so I stayed. I stayed and I sat there listening.

Throughout the debriefing, many said how they had wished they had gotten to choose their topic. That if there were more preparation… more time… and if only… if only this, then…. The voices claimed they were not invested, yet there was much more beyond their words. Each and every group fought in some way for the opportunity to present their topic at this Big Important Meeting/Event. It may not have been the topic per say that their love came about…
Love was simply the root. Love was what I found when I could look past the pain.

I sensed in debriefing that both students and faculty were unitedly hurting. This much was apparent.

I sensed there was something missing from this debriefing, but I had to step away for a moment to take care of myself first and so I ate. It was a familiar instinct that guided me. Looking back on today what I could see myself doing were things that were not normal for me… I was trying so badly to break free from habit.

When I look back now on this long day, I can recall many passing moments. So many points of contact. Then there were the many individuals (faculty and students) there who helped carry me late into this night. I have somewhat processed some of the hurt I felt within me and that I also saw in others...

What I recognize now that needed to follow from that debriefing was reinstallation of hope… and for me hearing the voices of those in my cohort who spoke today instilled something in me today: Hope.

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