Oh, it has been a busy couple of weeks. Starting first with figuring out how to pack for a year of simple living and saying goodbye for now to the city and people I’ve lived my whole life with. I ended up fitting everything into one suitcase and one massive backpack in time for me to make my first flight to Atlanta.
I spent three nights in Atlanta with YAV’s serving all over the country and beyond. The YAV staff called this time our orientation. We spent time getting to know one another, learning and talking about issues of racism, discrimination, and poverty to prepare us for things we may have to confront during our year. Until this, I had a very different idea of what an orientation meant. I had thought of orientations as icebreakers and getting to know each other. This was different, this orientation brought people together around conversation and issues. I loved it, I found it to be extremely useful and thought provoking.
Next, my housemate and I flew to D.C. where we were picked up at the airport and brought to the Church of The Pilgrims, our home for the year. The welcome to this city and DC YAV community was, and still proves to be, more than I could’ve ever expected. Everyone I have met has greeted me with excitement and deep kindness. We toured our basement apartment in the church, and I am amazed by the massive amount of space that has been provided for us and for the sincere invitation to make this place home. They even invited us to paint murals on the walls which I have already taken up.
I am continuing to orientate myself with the city of Washington and my placement for the year at L’Arche (more on that coming soon). Thank you to everyone for the support.
Sept 10th, Taking Time for Spontaneous Prayer
After a week and a half of flying, moving, and taking part in training and orientations. I started serving with my placement for the year this past week, a L’Arche home in D.C.. L’Arche is a non-profit that builds, sustains, and supports communities around core members with intellectual disabilities. I have been given the amazing opportunity to join this community as an assistant, whose role is to support core members in achieving goals and in their daily lives. I am so grateful to be so welcomed into this community and am deeply excited for the future.
This week has been made up of mostly training and shadowing assistants in the routines of different core members. My first time shadowing was this past Wednesday. I arrived at 7am and spent time shadowing the morning routine of one of the core members. I came into the house feeling somewhat anxious and not knowing what to expect. Immediately it starts getting busy and everyone is moving around and getting ready for the day. In the midst of the busyness, the core member I was with stops suddenly to say a prayer. It seemed he did so at the precise moment when I was the most busy and anxious. He stopped in his tracks and prayed. It was so comforting and relieving to take a moment with him to breathe and pray.
I hope anyone who may be feeling the craziness around them and in their lives could learn a lesson from this core member. Stop, breathe, and pray. I am looking forward to learning more from this community and the greater community of Washington D.C. and am so grateful for the continuous support FPCSF has given me. I am excited to share more of this journey with you all.
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