Sunday, October 9, 2011

I Am Expendable and We Will Be Great

As I mentioned in a previous post, there has been a lot of angst, frustration, tension, anxiety, and uncertainty surrounding the financial situation and proposed personnel and infrastructure cuts at my university.  Emotions are running high, conspiracy theories running deep, and common sense and ecumenical beliefs are giving way to childish reactions and devilish schemes.  Grown-ups forgetting they are Christians and acting like children.

I have been guilty of acting like a middle schooler during this time as well.

My wife, who has been feeling the same level of anxiety as the rest of campus, said something profound last night that has been a powerful reframing moment in our household.

She said that we were both expendable.

We could both lose our positions or voluntarily give up our positions and someone would follow us and do a good job.  The institution would carry on - students would still be taught, things would still be administered, and the university would press onward.


We're the only husband and wife each other have.

We're the only parents our child has.

When I get my son out of bed each morning, I am cashing in on a finite amount of dark, sleepy, early morning hugs.  Those will go away.  Soon, he will be too big for me to pick up.  Soon, he will get out of bed on his own.  Dress himself.  Feed himself.  And press onward.  These moments aren't expendable.  My relationship with my wife is not expendable.  There is not someone who will come in after me and do a good job loving her, supporting her, and building a life with her.

I am it.  And she for me.  

It was a moment of priority shift for me.  A significant priority shift.

And it feels right.

The university will be fine.

We will be great.

-- Listening to Eluvium 

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