There is something about sharing a living space with total strangers that evokes in me a certain level of cat-like territorial hostility.
Hello. I am the most recent addition to Flatlanders Inn. It has been one and a half months, thereabouts, and I have been asked how things are going more times than I can count. I can’t be sure whether this is because people know that the adjustment to communal life can be a confusing one and ask it in a semi-commiserating, mostly rap-port-building fashion, or because my idiosyncratic adjustment-period behaviours are somewhat un-nerving (see “cat-like territorial hostility” above). Whatever the case, I have noticed that my answer to the question (“Good”), while morphologically and phonetically unchanged (that is, it still looks and sounds like the word “good”), has shifted in tone towards something more optimistic and certain.
Some of the increase in certainty and hopeful anticipation has come through recalling why I applied in the first place, which was due to my gut-level sense that I needed to keep practicing the things I had begun to learn in the community I was in last year.
Something else that has helped is how inviting people have been. There has been an exceptional intentionality in asking me to all manner of group events, in and outside Flats, as well as simple coffee outings to get to know one another better. This, combined with the general willingness there seems to be among people to be open about what’s going on with them more personally, has contributed to my sense that this will be a good place for me to continue learning to live well, and to live honestly and authentically.
Sarah Moesker moved into Flatlanders Inn in September of this year. She is a Canadian Mennonite University student who comes to us from Ontario, where she was living in a different kind of community with the Sisters of Saint John the Divine in their “Companions” program.