About a year ago, I traveled to New York to speak at a women’s leadership event. What a difference a year makes. That trip would look completely different this year (if it happened at all.) But some things don’t change.
I remember sitting at the airport for my trip home. I love airport time. As I looked around, I knew the people in the large space reflected a wide variety of adventures and anticipation. I heard people talking about Disney, US Open, and lifelong dream trips. Of course, there were also the usual business travelers.
Then there was another layer of travelers—those traveling because of a funeral, sickness, or treatment. Those who were leaving family behind. There was concern about leaving and concern about getting somewhere. As many adventurous, exciting travels as I have had, I vividly remember one return trip home for a family emergency. It was difficult and overwhelming, and the time crept as I waited to get home.
Every single time I’m in an airport, I appreciate the diversity I’m tossed into. So many people going so many places with so many concerns and excitement. It’s as if our stories intersect for a brief moment of time, and we have no idea how much is happening within that concentrated place. There is not just diversity but also sameness. If we had the chance to talk to every person in the space, we’d likely find something in common with everyone. It’s fun to connect. I so appreciate our commonalities and our differences.
While it’s on a much smaller scale, we get an invitation to have a similar experience every day, to meet people and get to know them, to find out what we have in common and how we’re different. Perhaps it’s not always face to face, but we get more chances than we realize. There are many people we know who we could know better. We can reconnect with old friends. We can message people we only marginally know through social media. We can text and video chat people we’re losing touch with because of community health concerns and shifted habits.
Give it a try today. Connect with others and share your adventures and concerns. Do life together, even if it’s only for a brief moment in time.