What a week it has been! I finished my first week of work at the high school today. I am spending my days staffing the career office--helping students find college and job information--and teaching an ESL based, study-hall type class in the afternoons. After school time has actually been more consuming with unexpected guests, visiting at the hospital, setting up tutoring sessions and preparing lessons, youth group activities, and the parish garage sale tomorrow. I wanted so badly to tell the cross country coach that I'd love to help there as well, but I do have to remember to say no to some things.
While I have certainly been busier at various times in my life (namely my sophomore and junior years of college), this is a different way of being busy. The last two years especially have given me an increased awareness of myself and my motivations and a desire to be as fully as present to others as possible. This awareness and effort to be present makes the struggles of others and the accompanying emotions I feel much more immediate, deep, and real. I am very grateful for all that I feel and for the response I then desire to give, but it is also totally exhausting.
I am already looking forward to Sunday night when the activities of the weekend are over and I have Labor Day Monday for a bit of stillness, but in that looking forward, I also pray for the grace and energy to be present and aware to the moments of busyness. As one of our sisters encouraged us during a session of our intercommunity novitiate two years ago, I'll do my best to "walk in a relaxed manner," I'll take some deep breaths, and I'll keep centered on the mission of Jesus that leads and guides me when I remember to let it.