Saturday, April 10, 2010

Almost there!

Social media, as I've written about quite a lot lately, is an incredible tool to connect with people around the globe. Occasionally, we get really lucky and connect with someone via social media that happens to be in your own home town. This very thing happened to me a couple of months ago, with me connecting with a new girlfriend. We discovered many fun little details and experiences in common and chatted here and there via Facebook for many weeks before we got around to talking on the phone. Once that occurred, it was that happy spontaneous combustion where both hearts recognize one another and friendship is remembered in a blaze of excitement, common interests and resonating energy.

Fast forward to a recent networking event that was being held at a downtown Knoxville location and we were afforded the opportunity to drive to this event together. It was during the last few weeks of the truly vicious winter the whole country was dealing with and I have a bad habit of not using a proper winter coat when I really should. When we left the event late that evening, of course it was dark and the temperature had dropped considerably. As is common in most downtown areas, the higher buildings create a wind tunnel effect that whips the cold air into a rapier sharp weapon that steals your breath and stiffens your legs to the point that you can barely bend your knees as you hurry along.

That night, this new friendship was solidified by just such a sharp, winter wind. We were leaving the restaurant we had chosen for dinner after the networking event, and as we walked across Market Square in Knoxville, the wind tore down and slapped into us with enough force to make us both stagger. The primary objective was to get through the Square and behind some high enough building that might block the wind long enough for us to reach the parking garage. The photo to the left is of Market Square in the snow.

Me being my southern belle type of self, rather than swearing as viciously as the merciless wind deserved, I was breathlessly uttering my own litany and version of profanity. "Oh my word above!" "Holy conniptions!" "Sweet merciful petunias!" My girlfriend was laughing breathlessly at the novel form of swearing, informing me what an absolute rebel I was. We continued to hurry along, leaving the Square behind, but unfortunately we stepped into an even more brutal wind tunnel effect as we got close to the parking garage.

My girlfriend rushed ahead of me, exclaiming all the way, "Almost there, Dawn! Almost there!" This dissolved me into helpless giggles, as we were nowhere near "almost there" by any stretch of the imagination. Yet she kept declaring this positive statement as she bustled forward, continuing to spark absolute hilarity in her wake. The wind was tossing her winter scarf over her shoulder to dance and fly up in the air, entertaining me even more. This resulting laughter had the typical effect of making my knees weak and me even more breathless. "Almost there, Dawn!" kept trailing behind her, the cheerful words being snatched gleefully by the whipping winds as she outdistanced me, unhampered by helpless laughter as I was.

In that moment of absolute absurdity, my mind split in two, as it often does, and recognized the sheer power of her statement. "Almost there!" Yes, we were approaching the parking garage with varying degrees of success, one of us leading the charge, uttering encouragement and determination, the other straggling behind, giggling and stumbling, yet equally determined and enjoying the journey in a slightly different manner. It struck me that this moment of silliness and laughter between two girlfriends was a beautiful analogy. We are all always on the verge of becoming. Always on the verge of discovering. Always on the verge of achieving. Always on the verge of blossoming, lifting our faces to the warm sun. Always on the verge of breaking through. Always on the verge of conquering. Always doing all of the above in our own individual, unique fashion.

Today, several weeks later, our friendship has become so solid that we both have to work at remembering when we didn't know one another. This is often one of the most precious side benefits of friendship, that the heart realizes and remembers that we have done this many times before, and the love is simply a continuation in this moment, this place, this time. Now we constantly throw out "almost there!" in relation to practically everything we're discussing or experiencing together, because it is always apropo. It always applies to every single moment. And on a purely mundane note, it makes us both laugh. To me, that is particularly beautiful.

Life is a series of cycles. Beginnings and endings. Lessons learned, lessons begun anew. Experiences achieved, and new dreams explored. Personally, being in constant pursuit of that next hilltop, that next new vista, that next achievement is what drives me. It is a personal joy of mine to constantly be growing and changing, learning, discovering and evolving. The beauty of this process is that "almost there" is the irresistible lure that beckons me forward.

Sharing this experience with this new, yet old friend is the cherry on top of the whipped cream on top of the sundae. Even better, this same premise applies to many of the friends I have reconnected with via social media. Despite the fact that many of them are in far flung geographical locations from my own home, I have a deep inner knowing that I will see many of them face to face. I have no idea how this will manifest and am not concerned with the actual mechanics of it all; I simply have that inner certainty that it will occur. And once again, I am able to smile and throw in a cheerful "almost there!" declaration and enjoy how the entertwining threads create more unique fabric between friends of the heart who will eventually lay eyes on one another for the first time.

That hopeful stage of becoming is constantly changing, adapting and adjusting when necessary, and most importantly, continually inspiring each of us to reach for more. Simply....more. That human desire to expand our minds, and more importantly, our hearts and our Spirit. Journeying forward, sometimes together, other times apart, connecting again at seemingly random moments that are actually an intricate orchestration. Experiencing. Becoming. On the verge. Almost there!

If you enjoyed this post and would like to read more, you can find me at Healing Morning blog.