What a difference one year makes! I just returned from something called our fall "colloquium" yesterday. It's a school thing, but it is not really a class. It's more of a planning session for our professional projects. There are certain things we have to do by certain dates, and the school wants to make sure we get them done. We really worked hard on our write-ups (called a propsectus) over the summer for what we were planning to do, and I think we are all in pretty good shape.
Anyway, when I walked into our meeting facility on Thursday, I could hear the conversation and laughter from all the way down the hall...a far cry from last year when we did not know each other and we sat in silence waiting for class to start. It wasn't long before someone started talking about a particularly funny experience in class last spring. Then, we were off remembering our time at Drew last summer...we have shared memories now and that has created a bond between us. Although I am exceedingly happy to be DONE with the actual classwork, I will miss seeing my school peeps on a regular basis. We all hugged each other when we left.
It just made me realize again how important it is to belong somewhere - to have a community somewhere of people who help you get through things - whether it is a class or a major life change. It is important to have shared memories - things that have taken up permanent residence in YOUR mind and heart and in someone else's mind and heart. It is important to be a part of something bigger than yourself.
I am grateful for the opportunity to study with these people - what difference one year makes.