Postulancy is done. Our eighteen-day recess from initial formation has begun.
I moved out of St. Michael Friary this afternoon, and I already miss the place. Life seems just a little less magical, a little less beautiful or hopeful outside the friary. Or maybe it's because the skies are gray and the air is watery.
But I have little cause to linger in sadness, because I have many happy reunions on the way. Let rejoicing in the Lord, and in those who come in God's name, be my strength.
For the next six days I am making camp at my parents' house in Babylon. I have set up in one of their newly refurbished bedrooms, now a guest room. Nicholas, my kid brother, and I shared this room for nearly twelve years. In more recent times, Nicholas occupied this room alone until he moved out permanently this winter. Over those twenty years, the room changed color three times; the carpeting, too, has changed, twice over; the furniture has been entirely replaced, with old and new and borrowed pieces; the televisions and air conditioners have become sleeker, more powerful, and more sophisticated. But the room remains, and so do the memories of so much growing up.
This old house remains, though it bears less and less a physical resemblance to the home I knew. Last year, the bathrooms and bedrooms were renovated. This week begins another round of renovations, this time the kitchen, living room, and dining room. The ground floor is going to become a construction zone. The family room now functions as a makeshift kitchen and dining room. Needless to say, I'll be spending a lot of time out of doors and in the neighborhood!
This evening I will be going to Our Lady of Grace, my hometown parish, for faith sharing with the Small Christian Community group I used to attend before moving to Boston in 2005. Tomorrow I'm meeting my old high school English teacher for lunch in Babylon Village. On Friday, Nicholas and I will have dinner with our sister Jennifer at her house. On Sunday, Nicholas is cooking a Mother's Day dinner for the immediate family.
Next week, I go to Boston through the 21st. Ah, it will be so good to breathe New England air again and walk the streets of Boston and Cambridge.
When I return to Babylon, it will be Nicholas' turn to host me. I will stay at his apartment through the 26th, returning to my parents' house for the last night before I fly to Kansas on Pentecost.
May God add a blessing to every visit I make and lighten every step I take with the Holy Spirit's peace.