I am often plagued by the question “What could I have done differently”. I say plagued because at the right time, with the right mindset this is a great question. While in the middle of it all, I need to remain focused on what still can and needs to be done.
I am often reminded, after I make bold statements of how wonderful everything is, how challenging many things are as well. I felt so confident and focused, and then I was thrown a few curveballs. Mainly with the organization of the conference. Nearly 10 people dropped out last minute, for a variety of reasons that I personally have no control over. I keep thinking that we should have overbooked. Or should have somehow estimated the financial aid ahead of time to be able to make this conference more affordable to everyone off-the-bat. I am also not pushy. I think I am in fact laissez-faire and for me it just works. I say it just once. But I learned a new one: empower others. 50% do it, 50% don’t. I wonder how I would be as a parent. Would I push certain things just because I know it’s good for them? I fear the possibility of turning them off especially in those most important areas. Because I would loose a sense of listening because of being to focused on my own agenda. I strongly believe in free will and the freedom to choose, as long it is not a matter of life or death.
On the other hand, for this conference particularly, I am so impressed and grateful for the insights and persuasiveness of my friend in Arad. She has years of experience in making it happen even during times of confusion or for brand-new projects.
I gave it one more honest try with two friends and it just didn’t feel right. It didn’t go anywhere and I felt like a desperate beggar afterwards. I wanted so much for my closest girlfriends to want to come to this conference. I envisioned them there a year ago as we started planning it. I wish they understood and felt that draw to have fellowship, or to be wise enough to take a time of rest for themselves (it is not selfish to rest your body, mind and soul). It would’ve been only 2 week days and a weekend. Not more. But it is out of my hands. It has never been in my hands. Though today, Anca and I will make a last invitation to any and all who what to come.
As Carmen asked while we were studying Esther with the young women: do we live a time of crisis right now? (much like Esther in her time) We do. But we could go on and pretend we don’t. We live a time of apathy, or of fear of standing out, or we don’t even know what or whom to believe. Or where we are heading to. Who or what is our strong foundation? Do we even have one? There are some young people that see clearly, that are brave, that take small but sure steps. They are motivated from within, by a genuine desire to love others despite their response. I am also encouraged by a leader who has gone through life and hasn’t lost his childlike serenity; he speaks humbly and wisely and has patience with the younger generation. Doesn’t correct them before time. (Mr. B.) Resilience and persistence are essential though not highly regarded by many.
I look forward to recharging my batteries. After I hit an all-time-low coordinating, hosting and translating the conference, I foresee a time of decisions and renewed hope. As we have allowed ourselves to tryout a multitude of projects, being involved here and there and everywhere, taking a month off through the conference and the european tour with mom and dad, we’ll gain perspective and will cross off our list 50% of the things that could do just fine without us, and focus on the ones that we feel drawn to from within.