Thursday, January 13, 2011

Stop me before I volunteer again

The second week of every month I pay service to my local community.  How I got sucked back into my community I cannot say.   I think about my pillow and pajamas too much as it is for a grown woman, let alone someone with evening community obligations.   While my move to Wisconsin was traumatic, I clung to one hopeful thought.  My witness relocation would return me to the community anonymity of my town watch...or community board...or neighborhood block party/parade...or Little Osage front porch martini party planner.  Actually that last one I hated to give up.  Not to blow my own horn but as a working mom with two kids, and someone who commuted to work on her bike, I was a freakin' machine.

That was then.  I was younger.  Eight years later, I've made my peace with PTO and Girl Scouts and my volunteerism has been limited to one biggie about every other year and a firm commitment to imperfection that only comes with age.  And yet these days, even one evening meeting a month feels too much.  This week I had two.  Thankfully tempering this, the girls are now driving themselves quite seamlessly to and from wherever they need to go.  This workflow has left Chip and me with wine glasses in hand, baffled by our new freedom.

A sister's reference to the other about her driver's test and not having to take it 38 times.  
My first board meeting this week, we shared our 2011 resolutions as an icebreaker to the new year.  I didn't have one to share but a woman at the table reported that hers was to more fully explore her femininity.  The men at the table, well, they met that resolution with alert silence.  We women, however, rejoined with "We'll have what she's having."

My second meeting was less empowering as a woman (how could it not be really?) but I've since learned how to place a community event in the local paper and agreed to help reorganize and update the church library, a job for which I'm completely unqualified although that has not stopped me before.

I do have my first resolution of the new year, a product of commuting become more fluent in the lyrics of Bruce Springsteen's song catalog.  A resolution as random as my volunteerism.  I really like it.

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