Kid Boy Leaving Home 600x650

Part 2 of a 3-part series.  Read the first part here.

Following is an excerpt from Sam’s poem entitled “Homecoming” (Copyright 2007):

It’s hard to leave home
Even though you have done it a hundred times.
To step into the world is to step onto a road
That is not the same one you strode in before.
Everything and nothing has changed
And all the security of the last voyage
Comes undone with the uncertainty
Of the coming encounter.

It’s hard to leave home
Even though you have done it a hundred times.
The warmth and familiarity of your own hearth
Girds you from the rough fingers of the world
And the security of the front door makes it your castle.

We face a real dilemma when wanting to change! We know we must. We have changed before. We are most comfortable with things we already know.  And this time it will be different. The world has changed since we last left home! So, in spite of our years of experience, we are uncertain.

What do we do in this bind between being pulled forward and pulled back? One good approach comes from Appreciative Inquiry. In this well establish framework, we look for what we have learned and what we would like to take with us into the future. We examine our deep strengths that will be with us regardless of what we encounter. And we dream of what is possible. The dream is crucial and it must be compelling enough to draw our reluctant selves out the door and into the street.

I call my own practice “Walking Across the Street”. At the beginning of a year-long sabbatical, I realized I was becoming lonely in the absence of friends, work and familiar surroundings. One day I noticed a man talking with workers across the narrow street from our house. There had been a storm. So, with my heart in my throat, I walked across the street and asked, “How did your roof do in the storm?”

Just by that act of stepping into the unknown, I got out of my own way. Within minutes, I was introduced to a variety of people who became central to my sabbatical experience.

What security in your castle draws you back inside?
What are the “streets” you need to cross on your way to the future?
Who must you meet to create the new community of your work?

Stay tuned for next week, when we discuss Part 3 of this poem!

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