There are so many situations in life that I will never understand. I can listen to a woman talk about her experiences as a mother and I can hear her tell her stories of hope and despair but there are some things that my heart cannot understand.
I realized how powerful it can be to have someone else understand more of what I am experiencing in life...what that means to my heart. A friend had come to Philly this weekend to hang out and we had a great time. As we were driving home on Sunday she said to me, "Now I know why you come home every weekend so tired!" It was meant in a good way, but in that conversation we were just saying how wonderful it will be to have a place to land once I live in Philly. We have wonderful friends in Philly who have offered their homes openly at different times for me (and sometimes others) to stay there while visiting. I have practically lived in Philly part-time for the past two years. But there is something about having your own living room to sit with friends, something about having your own kitchen to cook meals in, something about having a bedroom to offer to others visiting. I am excited that God is providing that and pray that He will give me grace along with that opportunity to serve and bless others.
In that moment, even if it was small, I felt like this friend understood my journey just a little more.
Today at work I looked at the woman that was replacing me and just had to smile inside. We have had two marathon days, meeting with three different women each day. She was being introduced and I was saying my good-byes. She has worked in a similar setting before so this is not a brand new environment for her, but there is still a lot to learn and a lot of people to meet. We debriefed for a few minutes after work and it was good for me to have someone else who walked in my shoes for three days. I try to explain to people sometimes why my job can be stretching and exhausting, because meeting for an hour with three different women doesn't sound too intense or hard, but after the third meeting today - this woman understood.
I thank God for people in my life who take time to try to understand more. It is a gift because it is never easy and it rarely comes without a cost. Somestimes we don't know what to say or what to do when relating with another person, but sometimes it is just a matter of caring about that person and taking the time and energy to try to understand what they are experiencing even if it is just for a moment.