I was exhausted in the minutes leading up to my scheduled Circle Group this April. I'd driven back to Chicago from St. Louis after spending the first half of Easter Week in the Expo Hall of the NCEA conference. I was done being social and smiling at people; I was physically tired from driving and standing and sleeping in a strange bed. I didn't feel as though I had a coherent thought about Healing Divisions and I wasn't sure I cared. Why, I wondered, had I felt compelled to join a circle group, much the less facilitate one? I had to show up.
Then one by one Sisters joined the group. Some I had met in person, some names and faces were familiar to me from social media and other electronic communications and some I had never encountered before. We shared our thoughts, we were silent together, we laughed. I am still pondering the substance of our conversation--building bridges through personal connections and moving from I to we--and wondering how to implement it in my daily life. But even more I am--and was even then--energized by our gathering. I am overwhelmed with gratitude for all that we bring to such conversations; the trust that allows us to share openly and be vulnerable; the sense of call that moves us into action and dialogue, and the hope that enables us to live into the future even as we share our present.