Reflections from the Well: Paula Schonewald

A question posed to me when I offered to write this reflection was this: “How does the Well nourish your spiritual journey?”

The spiritual journey is filled with uncertainty. We need companions, fellow travelers, and also expert guidance, those with experience in travelling the Way. Nourish is a fitting word in this question. Travelers need to be fed and watered. Travelers also need a safe place to rest and replenish in order to set out again. Travelers need community. There is manna here.

Oh, how we need the support and encouragement of fellow seekers! We are simply unable to go it alone, nor are we meant to. My growth encourages the growth of another, and her growth is a catalyst for mine. At all the classes I have attended, and especially in the Women at the Well gathering, I have met kind, open, and accepting women who offered support and trust, wisdom, and a willingness to share knowledge and faith. I have been privileged to meet with folks who are seeking to grow and flourish and who trust the sanctity of the group.

In my abundant life outside the group, I am a mom of two active middle school-aged boys. In order to guide them sufficiently and well, I need to feel supported, fulfilled, and useful in the wider community. Having moved here in August of 2016, with the typical struggle and adjustment of moving to an unfamiliar place, the Well has provided a soft landing spot. It appears this landing place is part of the plan for my growth. I am grateful for these resources, for the kind and open and listening hearts, and for the programs already in place!

As poet Mary Oliver said,
“Let me keep company always with those who say Look!
and laugh in astonishment, and bow their heads.”

Paula Schonewald serves as secretary on the Well’s Board of Directors. She hails from Massachussetts near Cape Cod by way of the Connecticut Shore. Paula and her husband, Eric, are the parents of two vigorous middle school aged boys. She enjoys reading, yoga, and walking in nature with her exuberant yellow lab, Sasha.

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