The Astounding Thing about Living

Community is beginning to build up around me, like small stones a child piles carefully atop one another to build a wobbling wall. A house party and an invitation for a double date. Eating out Sunday at Panchero’s with new friends. A creative writing group that meets every other week.

And soon my job will start too—this Thursday. I’m beginning to see that it is possible to rebuild a life in a new place with new people. Even my aspirations seem new here, when I tell them to new people.
But this place is old for me too; it’s an origin of my life.
As a small child, I dreaded Madison. When I was told that we were going to take a trip to Madison, my mind thought of the hospital: of white sterile rooms, lying still inside the MRI machine while my mother read short storybooks to me. Needles and foreign fluids, and a sickening journey home over rolling hills. I always threw up on that trip—probably I always threw up on the outward and homeward legs of the trip.
Now Madison has been reborn for me as a place to call home, a place of green and lake and city. And the hospital has been reborn, as I look forward to working there—even in pediatrics! This journey God has set me on astounds me. How can all this be?
I am so very full with the grace of story—a grace which will, no doubt, flow over me until the day I die. And then I hope there is someone left who will be able to tell that whole, rich tale.

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