Thursday, April 24, 2008

Wearing Life Like a Seamless Garment

Someone called me a "workaholic" earlier today.

Considering the source, I couldn't tell whether the characterization was dig or compliment. It's not the first time I've heard this commentary about my apparent inability or unwillingness to carve life up into "work" and "relaxation." But it's neither inability nor unwillingness on my part. It's a lifestyle choice.

I once thought gender distinctions explained why men felt more compelled than women to make this observation about me. I've come around to thinking that while gender may be a factor, it doesn't entirely explain differences in how women and men organize life. I now believe that personal spirituality factors into an individual's definition of what is -- or isn't-- work.

This epiphany occurred during the recent Triduum. Although I found myself actively disliking John's gospel this year, internal spluttering did not prevent me from having a Holy Spirit moment upon hearing the word "seamless" with reference to Jesus's garment (John 19:23).

I was instantaneously reminded of an invitation, issued more than a decade ago, to "wear life like a loose garment." Next, I mentally drifted through conversations I've had about the perils of making rigid distinctions between life and work. And then, I realized that what I really want -- and have always wanted -- is to live life like a seamless garment.

Lifestyle choice? More likely a calling, which is probably why I can't recall ever being accused of workaholism by other spiritual seekers.


  1. What?! Nobody has commented on this yet? How can that be? Meredith, you have captured the pattern (sewing joke, to go with the seamless bit) of our lives perfectly. Thank you. This is an idea we will both ponder for a good long time.

  2. And thank you! I did get one comment via email which, it seems, folks seem to prefer to posting publicly. I don't know why that is, especially when the comment is positive!!
    Blessings, Meredith


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