Monday, November 5, 2012

seasons of love/life/gchat

"It was the discipline of his life to break ties; to say farewell and move on into the unknown."
--Death Comes for the Archbishop

My friends.  There are many sad/unfortunate/pathetic facts of life. One my sad/unfortunate facts is that throughout the seasonal ups-and-downs and ins-and-outs of my college experience, there has been one thread of continuity-- an undeniable comfort in the grand expanse of constant change--that beautiful, unifying factor would be gchat.
Oh my friends. I should be ashamed, truly ashamed of how large a role gchat has played in my life.
Am I?
Not even a smidgen ashamed. Out of infinity possible regrets, I have zero.

I also have zero regrets about the retreat we that I led all day today, even though this week is up there in the "Most Stressful Weeks of the Semester." (Right on the heels of "Most Roller-Coaster-y Week of the Semester". [You know: roller-coaster-y.])

But, instead of studying, I spent a good portion of the day with 27 high schoolers, who taught me more than I taught them. A large theme of the retreat was seasons of our lives. Sidebar: many of them associate autumn with death. But one girl believed autumn was a time of new beginnings, my heart went out to her at once, and I literally responded: "HOLLA," further confirming their belief that I was a irretrievably bizarre specimen of humanity. (In an endearing kind of way? I hope? That's what I'll tell myself.)

So, back to gchat: there are seasons in our lives we behave certain ways (see, it's all tying together). And we usually reflect which season we are in through social behavior. And my favorite social behavior is gchat.

I believe strongly that most people in your chat bar are in fact on gchat, they're just invisible. Being invisible on gchat is not a thing that is widely discussed. But we need to be honest that we all do it. What you set your gchat status as is usually highly indicative of your self-awareness of your own individual inclination to get sucked into conversations and the amount of time you have to spare for conversation.

Like the busy signal. That glaring red busy icon is just silly. I've never really understood why the busy signal exists. One of the few times I've used it was when I was in the busy signal for a good solid week or two, as a passive-aggressive response to another friend's busy signal (well, if YOU'RE busy. I'm busy).

I felt that I was far too busy to be leading this retreat. I woke up today feeling as though I should have said no--that would have been the smart choice, the responsible and practical choice.
But this retreat re-awoke a certain little part of me that was so alive and vibrant during the summer.

And it reminded me that some of the greatest lessons I've encountered have come from high schoolers.

One girl not even realizing how much her words applied to me as well as herself, talked about patience being an essential part of hope. About allowing yourself to be patient in your hopelessness, and trust that there will one day be a light at the end of the tunnel. She talked about the importance of friends to lift you out of yourself when you were incapable of it. I just listened and soaked in her wisdom and smiled and nodded and nodded some more.
 That yellow-orange idle/away icon is just ambiguous, like a yellow light: does it means hurry and speed up? Or slow down? Have they been gone forever and if you chat them will your message die in the stratosphere of the internet ether? Or are they just one tab over staring at Thought Catalog articles, dying for you to distract them from themselves? Indecision on indecision on indecision.

But the green gchat icon is where I've decided to live my life. It's the natural state of gchat. It says: Available. Open.


Sometimes, there's not much to say to five highschoolers sitting in a circle, not much wisdom you can give them, but to look them in the eye and say in the most matter-of-fact way that you can:

And you are worthy of being loved.
And you are loved.

And look them straight in the eye and say: you may not believe it, and you may doubt it (as we all often do), but that doesn't change the fact. I want you to believe it, but whether you do or not is up to you. Your belief in it's true-ness doesn't make it any less true.
Can we just be adults about this, I'll say, and accept that there are some things that are facts and can't be changed.
One of them is that you are loved.

And you can't argue with that, just like you can't argue that my mother is not my mother or that I woke up this morning. 
I popped out of her womb. I woke up this morning. These things happened. Sorry not sorry.
Let's just get a reality check and accept the facts. Whether or not I choose to believe them isn't a reflection of how true the facts are: my belief is just a reflection of how in touch with reality I actually am.
Since love is the ultimate reality, we are the most grounded and the most realistic in Love. 

If we are too caught up in the golden yesterdays, we'll never love the present.

1 comment:

  1. You always say exactly what I need to hear, right at the moment when I need to hear it the most.
    And you've done it again.
    Thank you. <3