My Strange Family Tree


Posted on April 29, 2019 by Jenn Zatopek

I sit in my first seminary class on a brisk winter afternoon, ecstatic about the opportunity to learn, listening as the professor begins her lecture. She writes a quote by St. Augustine on the whiteboard: “What do I love when I love my God?” Then, in her lilting accent, she talks about how family is the first place where an individual should feel the force of love.

As I hear the words about family, time slows down. To ground myself in the moment, I breathe slowly and stare out the window at the yellow cedar tree that contrasts against the gray sky. I know the signs, and I ask my God for strength. I can process later. Now is the time to learn.

After class, we students all shuffle out rather quietly, saying good-byes in hushed tones. I walk slowly to my car, parked on the far side of the campus, and review my experience. I’m saddened, and I feel that usual sense of distance from others. I also feel a familiar sense of shame for what I do not have.

It’s the family thing again, isn’t it? I say to myself. Yes, it most certainly is. . .

I’d love for you to click here and finish reading at The Glorious Table.

(Photo by Roman Kraft on Unsplash)

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  • Reply Lori Williams

    Relate very much to the post, Jenn. It’s so difficult to deal with those painful emotions. The isolation is the worst Thanks for sharing so honestly. It’s a great comfort to be to be so understood .

    April 30, 2019 at 7:46 pm
    • Reply Jenn Zatopek

      Lori, thank you so much for your comment and for your encouragement. I always appreciate your support and feedback. May we uncover our strengths and heal! Onward! xo

      May 2, 2019 at 2:34 pm

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