Reflections on a Decade

I’ve known this blog post was coming. I’ve been avoiding it to some extent. I’m not sure I can put into words all that I want to express. But, me being me, it’s important I get out what I can. And so I write. if you’ve followed along here for a while you know I’m a huge fan of growth and learning. The last decade has been leaps and bounds in terms of those two items for me. I went from a recent college grad to a working professional. I went from someone who had no idea what I wanted or who I was to someone who is fairly grounded in being her own person.

Much of the last decade has been dedicated to my time at SCC/Tapestry. I went through my photo archives the other day and posted on Facebook a bunch of significant memories from the last 9 years (and 9 months). It was cathartic. There were pictures with my kids and youth, but also with adults who have been so formational for me as well. It’s crazy thinking it’s been almost ten years at this place. It’s crazy thinking back to all of the transitions of staff over the years, transitions of church identity and locations, transitions of families in and out of our programs. And though it hasn’t always been easy, I’m happy for each piece along the way.

It’s hard to leave a place that you know so well, and people that you love so much. But when it’s time, you know it’s time. There have been times before when new job opportunities have presented themselves that I’ve thought about things being my “lasts” and setting myself up for them emotionally. But I didn’t do that this time. The pandemic “stole” some of those from me. And, honestly, I think that will make this transition “easier”. It gives me a way to separate and compartmentalize things a bit. It gives me a chance to remember that closure is what you make it, you aren’t owed anything.

I’m beyond grateful for where I’ve been, and excited for where I’m heading. The relationships I’ve built, the kiddos I’ve seen grow up and mature, the pocket communities I’ve helped create: I’m forever grateful for those experiences. And I truly believe all of the hills and valleys we’ve been through over the years have taught me about my own resiliency, flexibility, and level headedness under pressure (I know, shocking). I know I’m a better person because of my time at SCC/Tapestry. I know I’ve learned to deal with difficult situations because of that time as well.

It’s safe to say I wouldn’t be where I am today (personally or professionally) without the presence of Tapestry folks in my life. And while I’ll take some major steps back in terms of engagement, I also know there are some lifelong connections that have been forged there. Friends. Family. There are certain things, and people, you just can’t walk away from once they’ve entered your life. Several folks have asked if I’ll come back and worship at Tapestry. Honestly I don’t know what the future holds in terms of my spiritual journey. But I know this: it isn’t fair to jump in immediately. The congregation needs space to figure out who is the right fit to fill the position (whatever they deem the position to be). They need space to allow that person to be acclimated without the pressure of my presence looming over them. And I need space too. I need to reclaim my Sunday’s for a while. I went from Sunday morning responsibilities during my internship in college, to Sunday morning volunteers at ASP, to a short stint of attending NUMC, to working Sundays at SCC/Tapestry. I need a break. I need to time to myself. I need to figure out what will best support my own spiritual journey. At coffee with a friend this week, she said it best. Something along the lines of “that time to yourself makes sense; the beauty is you’ve had to get your spiritual needs met in places other than Sunday mornings in the last almost ten years. So you know how to do it in this transition time.” I never would have had those words, but it’s so true.

I’m sure there will be more reflections to come. But for now, this is what I have. I’m giving myself grace to enjoy my last four days. I’m giving myself grace to enjoy my last Sunday; my reception, my staff lunch, my last time seeing some folks for a bit. I’m giving myself grace.

I absolutely love this piece from Etsy.