Community I can rely on
by Simi Jayeoba, student
Open Circle’s programming and events have been huge for me in moments where I was in need of connection, support, and understanding. The space that is created in Open Circle is hard to find in other areas of my life as a university student. I first attended an Open Circle event not knowing much of the group. I got to witness a collection of unique individuals, united by their willingness to be vulnerable as they grew in their understanding of themselves and others. I walked away knowing that there is a community on campus that holds space for me and with a quote I still cherish to this day.
In September 2019, I was going through an emotionally difficult time. I was doing my best to support myself but began to realize that I needed to seek support outside of myself. Joining my first Becoming Yourself Series was a large part of what helped me regain my calmness surrounding my day to day life. I began to look more within myself and see the beauty that lay there. The activities we did inspired some of my poetry and added to my confidence.
2020 has been a rather turbulent time in most of our lives. Both personally and globally, I was facing challenges by the end of the Winter Term. My anxieties surrounding life had grown greatly and I was again in need of the support of others. For some time, Open Circle’s Body Mind Spirit sessions and Becoming Yourself Series meetings were the only regularly scheduled interactions I could consistently rely on. Marybeth even put aside time for occasional one on one Spiritual Companioning sessions in addition to her willingness to stay on calls well after their scheduled times. It’s hard to put into words all the changes and growth I’ve experienced in the last months. Every element that contributed to my greater wellbeing is significant, and the effect of sharing love with others is far from small.
I am immensely grateful for Open Circle and how selflessly Marybeth pours herself into helping others. It’s my hope that more and more people experience the power of loving themselves and others more deeply. Groups like Open Circle are so essential in facilitating that change in our communities and thereby our world.