When I turned 30 a few years ago, I was surprised to discover that part of me had been slumbering for my entire adult life. Who knew that was possible? I sure didn’t. I lived a full and comfortable life, with a loving husband and supportive family. I'd been able to establish myself in a career, attain an advanced degree, and reach a point where I was giving back by mentoring students in my profession. Hadn't I reached that adult destination I had so often dreamed about in college? So why did it feel like something was missing?
Then I realized that I was nowhere near my destination, I was at the beginning. I was entering some of the best, most productive years of my life. I got married, I had my degrees, I fought for my career, I bought my home. Yes, I accomplished any number of grown-up things, but I was only just learning that I was not done growing up.
So turning 30 became an opportunity to stop doing and start learning, about myself and my world. About that time, I stumbled on a spiritual memoir by Sue Monk Kidd titled, “The Dance of the Dissident Daughter: A Woman’s Journey from Christian Tradition to the Sacred Feminine.” It’s hard for me to articulate the impact this book had on me. I wouldn’t say it opened a whole new window for me; rather, it pulled back the drapes to reveal a window I was beginning to suspect was there.
What does that window represent? A new view of myself as a woman. Outside that window, I see a path toward a new enlightenment, a new and profound acceptance of how I fit into the world. As I read Kidd’s book, I was struck by the utter simplicity of the notion that what one woman has experienced has some bearing on the things all women experience. Even though our journeys and destinations aren’t all the same, we can still help each other spot the milestones and appreciate the journey.
Reading about Kidd’s spiritual journey showed me that no story is too small or insignificant. I have loved my Story Circle Network membership because I get to meet all manner of wonderful, courageous, and wise women who inspire me every day. Every single one of them has shown me, without a doubt, that we all have a story to tell. But more than that, we're still writing our stories every single day.