At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us. -Albert Schweitzer
There’s a group of women who’ve taken one or more of Hannah Marcotti‘s online classes. I’ve never met most of them in real life, yet we’re Hannah‘s alumni, and we continue to circle together in an online world, finding and sharing joy in everyday happenings, sometimes offering condolences, often laughing, chatting [of course], sometimes gently challenging each other, and always – always – standing in support of each other.
And so it was, then, as my surgery date came around, that these women – 10s and 10s if not 100s of them – in all corners of the United States, Europe, and Australia – held me in thought, in prayer, in spirit. Not only did they hold me, but they held my daughters, surgeons, the hospital, and all those who were tending to me in real time, throughout the day.
Their messages are part of a private Facebook group, and it’s not my place to share them, but I’ll tell you that I was able to see a few before I was rolled into the operating room [yes, they let you keep your iPhone in surgery prep], and they filled me with calm.
And, then, throughout the day, as the surgery wore on and on, they were there: post after post, thought after thought, prayer after prayer, candles being lit, flames burning brightly. It was magical, almost other-worldly, because we just don’t see that kind of community tirelessly united in persistent, loving spirit, it seems, these days.
They created a warm, pink glow of love and light, offered reiki, visited abbeys, shared their hearts, gave of themselves. And now as I look back at the thread of our community, I am floored – utterly overcome and brought to tears – by these women from all walks of life, living in vastly different circumstances let alone in different cities, countries, and continents and having busy lives of their own. Each held me in thought that day, as if she were holding my hand. What an incredible blessing to have that unshakable energy directed my way.
Perhaps editor and author Emily Kimbrough said it best: “Remember, we all stumble, every one of us. That’s why it’s a comfort to go hand in hand.” Indeed, it’s comfort beyond measure.
Photo credits: Beloved members of the Joy Up Alumni Tribe, December 27, 2013.