For yesterday’s connection, I wanted to give a shout out to my buddies. We had a call last night, and just as with our first call, it was cool having the three of us — all from ALP4 — discussing what we were up to and where we were at and supporting each other, now nearly three years later.
For Lianda and I, we’ve been together since Basic. Since we both skipped the Advanced we were “supposed” to take, that’s special for both of us. It’s cool to witness her growth, and it’s interesting to see little parallels in terms of where we are in our respective journeys. “Emerging” was the word that came to mind.
For Lori, she came into our LP having not done Advanced with us. It’s interesting how little that mattered in the end, and it felt good to think about how strong our bonds are with each other across ALP4. We judged ourselves a lot as an LP–we were resistant, disconnected, unwilling to act as a team. But then, here we are, six out of our 13, participating voluntarily in this group together. Remarkable.
I hardly see Lianda or Lori, but they were both at my wedding–Lori even caught the bouquet. And on the phone last night, it was clear we were people who knew each other well. We could freely share, not just what we were struggling with, but, our dreams.
As an aside, it’s amazing to me how vulnerable it feels for me to share my dreams. I’m always expecting the other person to shoot them down. That can’t work, that’s impossible, you’re not good enough, others have already done it better. I’m still getting used to not hearing that response–to having people celebrate my dreams instead, tell me they believe in me, that they’re waiting for me to make it happen.
So I left our conversation feeling gratitude for my LP and the wider community. I also got to think about how connection can be strong and meaningful even if you don’t keep in touch all the time. We’re connected on a deeper level that transcends such things, and it’s nice to feel that connection and trust that it’s there even when we’re off on our separate paths.
It’s a big realization for me to think about, because my limiting belief is if you’re not actively seeing each other, your connection evaporates or is superficial at best. It’s liberating to think that that’s not true, and I need not look any further than my own heart to know it. I am still connected to people from the past–I can feel it. It’s a living, breathing thing. I am connected, still, even to deceased people.
My grandparents died when I was seven, but I still have an unnatural fondness for dinosaurs because my grandpa sat with me for hours while my parents were at work, reading me the dinosaur book he’d given me, teaching me how to recognize and read the “ands” and “thes” long before most children even contemplated reading. And when I see beautiful paintings and can’t help but add them to my collection of artwork that Jimmy patiently tolerates, I think of my grandmother, her paintings adorning the walls in my room, and how she felt connected to us even before we were born. Months before my sister was born, my grandma painted a picture of her in a grassy field, holding a dandelion. The girl in the picture has my sister’s golden-brown hair, but more remarkably, the image seems to emanate her essence–even now.
Connection has little to do with physical presence–it’s instead something you open yourself to give and receive, or not.