Monday, July 8, 2013

FGC Gathering: Re-Entry

Just over three weeks ago, I had a yard sale.  In preparation for my move to Atlanta in August, I sold just about anything I thought I could do without for the next few months.

On the morning of the sale, I realized that I had forgotten to include a large glass vase.  I was busy getting things ready for the sale, so I set the vase on top of a bookshelf in the dining room.

Yard Sale, photo by Alivia B
A few minutes later, when I was in another room, I heard a crash and breaking glass.  I immediately knew what had happened: one of my cats had knocked over the vase and broken it on the floor.  I ran out, locked the cats in another room, and began to pick up the pieces.  Without thinking, I started to scoop up the smaller bits of glass with my bare hands—a stupid idea, which resulted in a small shard of glass imbedding itself in the tip of my right middle finger, where it stayed.

Over the following week, I tried various methods to get the glass sliver out of my finger, to no avail.  It was painful, but invisible, and I could see that it was not infected.  I realized that I just needed to wait for the glass to naturally work its way out of my finger.

After a few days, it no longer hurt, but it was strange to know (and to be able to feel) that there was a small piece of glass in my body.  Just yesterday—three weeks after the sale and when I had nearly forgotten about it—the glass finally started to come to the surface of my fingertip.

Coincidentally (or more likely, not), yesterday was also the day I had set aside for re-entry after returning home from the FGC Gathering.  In my slowed-down, processing state, my healing finger seemed like an apt metaphor for some of the deeper healing that happened for me at the Gathering—healing of deep spiritual wounds that I didn't know I still had.

I feel like I am just starting to understand some of the healing that has taken place.  I know that I will write more about my experiences at the Gathering because I need to report back to my meeting and the Pickett Endowment, but I don't have the words quite yet.

Instead, I am working through my feelings with art and music.  I spent most of meeting yesterday creating this Venn diagram of what happened for me at the Gathering (and what did not).

Venn diagram
I have also been singing and listening to music.  If I were to choose a theme song for my time at the Gathering, it would be Storm Large's "Angels in Gas Stations," which I probably listened to close to 20 times while I was there.

Blessings, Friends.


*UPDATE 7/15/13*

I did, in fact, have a lot to say about my experiences at the FGC Gathering, once I had a little more time to process.  Here are the posts I wrote about it:

FGC Gathering: Some Thoughts on Privilege

FGC Gathering: Vocal Ministry

Dialogue II

FGC Gathering: Report

Traveling Minute and Endorsements



  1. The cats encountered something unexpected. Good for you for protecting them from the damage wrought by the encounter.

    What is it that tempts us sometimes to try to pick up shards of something shattered with our bare hands?

    Not sure that's any help with re-entry from Gathering, but I am interested to know more....

    1. These are great reflections, RantWoman! I hadn't thought about how I knew to protect the cats, but didn't protect myself. More is coming . . .


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