There must be blood, the girl thought. There must always be blood. The Green Wind said that, so it must be true. It will all be hard and it will be bloody, but there will be wonders, too, or else why bring me here at all? And it’s the wonders I’m after, even if I have to bleed for them.
Everything has moved so quickly, from meeting with my brother and priest (strangely this relationship works fine, thank you very much), to sitting and listening to the vestry call together a group who will discern along side me a call to something more, something else.
They started to talk about me last night, in front of me, as I took their minutes. Not in a mean way, but it is always odd to be the subject of a discussion about oneself and to actually be present for it. I felt strangely shy, did a quick check (I have to do this frequently to make sure I am not pulling a face, I am really good at pulling a face at inappropriate moments) and realized that my head was bowed and my hands had stilled on the keyboard of the laptop I use to take their meeting minutes. It all just sort of went still, the sky outside the large windows dark and angry, the wind blowing and making the age old pines sing and shriek. And my hands, with their neat nails and my small, short fingers, my own wedding rings sparking back at me.
My mind wandered just for a minute back to a sunlit bedroom in Traverse City. I had chosen and bought my rings many months before, and they’d sat in the very top cupboard in our kitchen where I wasn’t allowed to look at them and couldn’t reach them. (Did you really expect me to do anything conventionally?) I came home from work and we had our sweet little changeling with her white blonde hair and unmistakable blue Hager eyes. And there was Casey, trembling, on one knee, with the ring I had not seen in person, asking me.
Jared and I talked about the time commitment, we talked about Letters of Agreement that lay out what the responsibilities are, both in time and duty. I think he understands, though he is doing well as of late, how one can be sucked in and just not leave if one allows it.
And then my committee was formed and I had typed all of their names neatly into my minutes template and it was done.
Now we will discern, and I hope they don’t find that I am untrue, that I am mistaken. I don’t believe that I am. I feel like one aspect of a true call is not one of absolute joy at the prospect, but rather one of trembling and trepidation. I tremble and am afraid at the gross responsibility that could be mine. I struggle with feeling like I am enough.
If they believe that what I am feeling is true I will enter my own postulancy, with Deacon school ten times per year on the other side of the state, a sort of crash course in theology and the church.
It is not a choice, it is a call.
I will do my absolute best to be present for my husband and my children, for my paying job. I will continue to write, I hope. I will need to step back from some of the things I do now that actually are parts of the ministry of a deacon; the soup kitchen for example. I will need to closely and jealously guard my time and how it is spent.
And I do not doubt that there will be blood, its already been shed, after all. I do not doubt that it will all be terrible and hard, but I am in it for the wonders, the wonders of what my two small hands, with their neat nails that are rarely painted, and their small and sparking rings; what they can do.
I know they can bring friendship to those marginalized. I know they can hold a hand, touch a shoulder, hand a tray of food through a window, a can of green beans to a person who will add them to their household menu for the week.
I know I can tell Bible stories to children. I know that I can comfort my dear friend’s little bit when she is having an I need mommy morning. That I can comfort my own children.
I know that I can tenderly hold my husband and the memory of the way his hands shook as he offered me my ring.
What wonders are to come? And how much blood will be required?