A lot of rain and a little sunshine can make all the difference.
It's twelve weeks into the second half of The Curate's curacy and we are both still learning so much about this new parish. It is very different from where we were before and it does rain a lot! I thought I had reached the point where I could settle in as The Curate's wife more easily, having struggled in our last parish to come to terms with our situation. I know I want to be beside The Curate - but in what role? I am trying to practise positivity which (according to Jane Fonda in The Mail on Sunday today) is
"an attitude, a way to approach life; it is expressed through humour, gratitude, forgiveness, playfulness, creativeness and adaptability."
In many ways I wish The Curate had given up his old life sooner and gone to college for his training. In that way I would have met others in a similar situation to myself and I would have had some introduction to this way of life. There are things that I have trouble figuring out. Here are a few of them:-
* Do I have to have a 'ministry'? Even on a positive day - I don't feel called to youth work, coffee making, flower rotas, prayer ministry - is this my lack of church experience? (I do see a need to support The Curate - both practically and as 'a sounding board'.)
* Do I have to belong to a house group? It can be awkward when conversations turn to church management - as so often can happen in small groups.
* Do I go to church on my own - and risk sitting in the pew on my own for a few weeks - or do I follow The Curate when he is going to the other churches in the mission community and so become known to the other congregations ( even if it is only as 'The curate's wife)?
* Do I volunteer for the coffee rota and then find that I am unable to go with The Curate to the other churches ( one of which has been very welcoming)?
* How do we manage a social life together when The Curate feels church initiated social situations are 'work' and I see him doing a lot of listening but not really relaxing?
* Not having young children is a distinct disadvantage. I know how much easier it was to get to know others in our old village just by standing at the school gate or meeting in the park. There are no casual meeting places here so where do I start? ( I'm doing the gym - but we are all so puffed - no one speaks!!)
This is a positive blog - and these are just thoughts and I will return to them in a few months to see how things have changed. Perhaps you may have experienced similar as you settle into new homes. Am I just too impatient?