We struck up a blogging friendship. With my stepson and 2 grandchildren living in the next town over from Carol, I harbored a secret hope that one day I'd be able to meet her. My opportunity arrived last month, when in a best-case scenario, I was able to meet her at the Women in Black gathering (!) and stand in solidarity with that committed band.
I stand for peace weekly in El Paso, but this was something different, and I felt it. The black. The silence. In my mind I was standing for all the women who mourn in this war-torn world. Mr. Carol for Peace stopped by to take some photos, and I can see now that my emotions were evident on my face:
Not the smiling, happy, joyful, peace-filled presence I try to embody in El Paso. The hour was profound for me: a somewhat grim hour of being present to those who mourn due to wars we cause in lands far away. But I'm sure it means something different to everyone who participates as well as to everyone who observes it.
We spent the rest of the afternoon together at the home of Carol and her husband. It was amazing. We chatted as though we had known each other all our lives with mutual interests galore. It happened to be our birthday weekend--for both of us!--and we each felt like our time together was a gift. Carol delivered me to the wedding I was in town to attend. I felt like a visiting dignitary, she and her husband were so good to me.
Our conversation turned to the spirituality of peacemaking. It was providential for me, who perhaps tends to move too quickly into action and neglect the meditative underpinnings that maintain a peaceful presence in the world. This was all so meaningful and has stayed with me in the ensuing weeks.
I want to pass to Carol this award I received from Utah Savage. It means a lot to me: a sisterhood award. The relationships we form here are so real. So authentic. We put our hearts and souls on our blogs. Some people denigrade "virtual relationships" as inauthentic. They are wrong. Pure and simple. I am so happy that my family has expanded through the relationships I've made here. Carol, you're my sister across the miles, and I love you. Give your sweetie my best regards and thanks, too.
We shared favorite movies, books and authors that afternoon. I want to close with the words of one we discussed:
The world is holy. We are holy. All life is holy. Daily prayers are delivered on the lips of breaking waves, the whisperings of grasses, the shimmering of leaves.
from Talking to God: Portrait of a World at Prayer (anthology)