Some Wise Words From a Friend

Recently I reconnected with an old friend, Michelle Coleman. We met perhaps 15 years ago in Nova Scotia, Canada in some shared learning from The Art of Hosting body of work.

Michelle and I have stayed in touch periodically through an email here and there. More recently with an invitation from her to explore some aspects of eldering. It’s an active topic and practice for Michelle in her 50-something version of herself. It’s an active topic and practice for me.

I loved what we found together in the space of an hour on a Saturday morning — old friends not just picking up easily where we left off, but also launching much further in wonder and learning together.

Michelle shared something profound on that Saturday that has stayed with me since. We were in the general domain and curiosity that is “eldering.” That connected into some wonder about “legacy.” Michelle’s offered words in one of those cut-to-the-truth moments.

“My legacy is my living and my loving now,” she said.
“My legacy is my living now. My legacy is my loving now,”
she confirmed.

This is such clarity about the importance of “now.” We weren’t talking about legacy that is in form or structure, although it can also be that. We weren’t talking about legacy as a thing. Instead, we talked about it as commitment, as joyful discipline, as courageous imagination, as attentive noticing, to the present and important moment of now.

We got silent for a bit together after she said those words. For me it felt like that silence when the full moon crests over the mountain. Or when the full sun arrives to bring light to the day. It was a moment of no-words to mark the importance of the words spoken.

Michelle and I continued, following the opening together. There were ample learnings and insights and moments of pause that were very invigorating and continue to stir in me — with hopes of contributing more wisdom and soulfulness to the places within me and the places in which I get to be with others.

And then we thanked each other, for this moment of now. And off of Zoom we went, to let the moment cook further in its own natural way.

I’m grateful to Michelle. I’m grateful for connection with friends and fellow journeyers, that is so easy to follow. I’m grateful for these moments when life energy does what it does through a few wise, and lasting, words.

2 Replies to “Some Wise Words From a Friend”

  1. Tenneson! Thank you for sharing this reflection…and for sharing your precious time, attention and presence on that beautiful Saturday morning. It was a delight to ‘see’ each other over coffee and wander into wondering about ‘eldering’ together. Thank you for hosting me as so many words came spilling out and for the deep listening that helped crystalize the “wise words” so I can carry them with me…now.

    I, too, recall that magical moment: “We got silent for a bit together after she said those words. For me it felt like that silence when the full moon crests over the mountain. Or when the full sun arrives to bring light to the day. It was a moment of no-words to mark the importance of the words spoken.”

    Here’s to the gifts of now, and to the friends we meet there!

    With joyful gratitude,
    Michelle

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