After two days of staying focused and productive, I wake up Wednesday mornings ready to see some friendly faces. Wednesdays are the day of the week that I regulaly meet with one to three groups. One of these groups is a Mom’s coffee group. It is technically called the Tuesday Coffee because my daughter told me our group text needed a name and we used to meet on Tuesdays but we all have a lot of moving parts so each week we check in to see the morning that will work for most of us. In the late morning, I attend a study that deepens my spiritual practice and in the afternoon, I am a part of a professional development group.
Coffee Group: This is a small group of women who are in the same developmental phase of life as I am. Our kids are all friends and I love their kids as if they were my own. We cry together, laugh together, get some perspective together and remind each other we are not going crazy, we are just parenting teenagers. This is my support group for the specific challenges of this phase of life. This group came about organically because we were already doing life together through our kid’s lives.
Spiritual Formation: This is a group where I practice what I know and what I am learning. It is a time set aside for me to not be an expert, to practice being myself in both nurturing and provoking circumstances. This is a place where I expose myself to ideas, beliefs and values that are different from my own. I call it Cross-fit for the soul. I was invited to join this group by a friend of mine.
Professional Development Group: Everyone in this group was a stranger to me before I walked into my first meeting. We all have the same goal–to develop our professional skills. This is a non-judgmental atmosphere where we are being critiqued and challenged by our peers to help us meet our own goals. After evaluating what skills I needed to pursue future goals, I did some exploring online and found this group through Meetup.com.
I cannot and do not attend each of these groups every week, but when I have the opportunity to participate they are my priority. These groups are my intentional community and they provide me with avenues to grow and to contribute just by showing up. Picking up of off yesterday’s post, Wednesdays are my day to spend some time in the coffee shop and/or the conference room.
According to the online etymology dictionary, the word community comes from Old French comunité “community, commonness, everybody,” and Latin communitatem “community, society, fellowship, friendly intercourse; courtesy, condescension, affability,” from communis “common, public, general, shared by all or many.”
While I am always encouraged by realizing we are all in the same boat, these relationships have also reavealed to me how very different we are. We each experience life through the lens of our own experience and I am humbled by how much we have to learn from each other.
May you find a community where you can grow and contribute.