Hallelujah! The clouds are gone for now and the sun is shining and I am happy and hopeful again. What a tremendous gift it is to be able to enjoy life.
When I finished my 2008 retreat (which I'm slowly recording here) I didn't leave with many answers, but I was sure that God loved me and that he was calling me to become involved in some kind of community, in some way. I also knew that while on retreat I actually enjoyed living with the sisters - I haven't enjoyed living with people since...well, never mind. :) So I figured that a move into some type of community, whether a convent or something more informal, would happen someday. God knows I need a lot of heads up when it comes to big changes, so he let me sit with the idea for a couple of years, until I sensed the prompting last Sunday night that it was time to live with others. As an intermediate step (I think) to living in some kind of community, I will be moving in with my aunt and uncle soon. This will help me financially as well as help me get used to a different lifestyle. And I enjoyed following the open doors and discovering the path God had prepared for me in this situation.
I thought and prayed about living with aunt & uncle for several days and I discussed it with my spiritual director. After talking and praying with her, this move seemed to be the thing to explore. So I called a & u out of the blue and asked to come over. I asked them to think and pray about me moving in, and they smiled and said we already have, we were just talking about it, we don't need time to think, come on over! I love it when that happens. The other neat thing that worked out is that I'll be closer to my friend K's house, and she needs help getting her son to school one morning a week. Thanks to my aunt's kindness and flexibility, she traded days of caring for Grandpa with me and I can help K! One of the things I knew I needed and would gain from the move is a greater participation in the daily routines of life (stewardship), interacting with people more, and building new and deeper relationships with people. So K's need complements my own, and we can mutually help each other. It will be another type of family, and I'm looking forward to it.
While I suspect adjusting to this change will be hard at times, overall I am so thankful for a new, positive step to further growth and being in Christ.