For High School graduation, my English teacher dedicated a book to me, “The Voyage Out” by Virginia Woolf because I obsessed about my next move, the way out, and what I would be when I grew up. I craved purpose and wisdom acquired through a process of “adulting:” education, career and relationships.
Life is all of those things, and none of it.
It took me fifty years to submit to life’s message, there is no solution, no Grown-up Judy Who Understands All. There is no right time, but now.
In January 2017, I started working with Syrian refugees. The election of Donald Trump and the Women’s March rallies flipped a switch inside me. I am activated. My interest in Middle Eastern cross-cultural learning feels like a happy buzz, feeding my perennial interest in belonging, identity building and the concept of home.
It’s not without discouraging moments. Organizing American volunteers is considerably more challenging than meeting Syrian refugees, eating their yummy baklava and sipping wee cups of strong, fragrant coffee. Sometimes I want to throw up my hands because communication seems too hard and refugee needs are often urgent and time-consuming. That is in the moment.
It is Ramadan, a time of gratitude and soul-reflection. I submit. The threads in my life create a long rug, a runner, a forever-weaving tapestry whether I sleep, despair or march on life. Showing up for the unfolding of this life-driven tapestry is my answer. Whatever my choices in the moment, in the long-term I will be different. Hopefully better. I am never arrived, always off-balance, juggling, always learning. I surrender. I say yes, and accept that there is never time, nothing is good enough.
There is never a good time, but now.
This post inspired by community Iftar celebrations and Seth Godin