During pregnancy I was given fair (ish) warning on a few of the uncomfortable things that we’re in store for me as a new mom. The harmless disclaimers included daily reminders to stock up on sleep, reassurance that the feelings of imbalance would be normal and would never, ever, ever subside, and that everything I had believed about my origins and hoped for my future would be forever shifted to revolve around someone who would make a daily practice out of spitting up on me (for at least the first year of her life.) Along with this last one I was told to prepare to no longer be the center of attention. Every time a well-meaning mom advised I “get ready” for this re-casting, I breathed a gigantic sigh of relief. I could not wait for the spot light to be off of me and my growing belly. Sure, it was nice having people grab the door for me or offer a seat wherever I went but being the front page news of the day was definitely not my cup of tea, or decaf coffee as it were.
Being a part of and not the whole story is a concept that took a while to “take” with me. My experience as a first child and musical theater student didn’t help…but once this became a very apparent truth in my life it made a few things much harder and a lot of things much, much easier. The impetus became to know and do my part, to yield when necessary, to work with the parts of others. Most importantly being a part of the story released my need for power, authority, respect, admiration…you get the point!
We certainly are story-people. Gathering, sharing, and knowing each other’s stories helps us to see portions of the bigger story that is alive, well, and continuing in our world. In studying stories we begin to believe that there really is a dimensional aspect to all situations, people, and times. We build our library and add depth to the contexts of our experiences and observations. Seeing the stories gives us some defense against the snap judgement, one-vote culture we’re embedded within. It helps us stay curious and in communion with one another.
In the spirit of stories, I invite those of you in the Maryland area to come see my dear friend, (and travel companion!) Biblical Storyteller Tracy Radosevic at Towson United Methodist tomorrow, Saturday March 23. For more information, check this out.