After a long day filled with classes, bible studies, lengthy meetings, and an impromptu grocery run around 11:15 with Maggie, I was plenty ready for sleep. As Mags and I put up our groceries Sarah came downstairs.
I don’t really remember what we talked about, but Mags, Sarah and I stayed in the kitchen eating the spinach ravioli, a food item being tested out for community dinners, until Jami came home around 12:30. Migrating into the living room we talked about a lecture on sweat shop labor Jami had attended earlier that evening. I tried to exit the room at least four times saying I was going to bed, yet found myself continuously drawn back into the conversation or simply interested to hear my roommates thoughts.
Finally, around 1:15 I stealthily left the den for my room. I put on PJ’s, brushed my teeth, washed my face and got ready for bed. Then Sarah came in, needing “something” from my room. When I came out of my bathroom she was curled up on my bed. I sat opposite her talking about some nonsense, hoping she would feel her own motivation to go to sleep soon.
Mags then came in my room, carrying the broom, doing some late night cleaning before going to bed. Hearing us talking, Jami came in asking why she hadn’t been invited to the party. Before I knew it the four of us were bundled on my twin bed, rather a feat of physics if you ask me.
I woke up around 2:30 AM unable to stretch out my legs because Sarah was blocking the lower half of my bed. Jami, having served as my pillow, had wakened me by going to bed while Mags was just brushing her teeth. I called out to Maggie to get Sarah into a different bed. Groggily, Sarah followed Maggie out of my bedroom and at 2:38, at last, I was able to stretch out on my bed, close my eyes and go to sleep.
This is no new story, especially for college students. It’s one of my favorite parts of community these haphazard late nights of discussion and friendship. I am so grateful to the roommates who won’t let me sleep, who pursue me, sneaking into my room to keep talking and being together for no other reason than to be in each other’s presence.
As Maggie and I drove to and from the grocery we talked about the fact that after this year we would probably never live with this many people again, at least not until we have our own families. This time of our intentional community, at least in this capacity, is quickly drawing to a close. I can merely say that I hope these next few weeks slow to a crawl, though I know they won’t. I hope I have many more sleep deprived nights, for interruptions, and detours of my previous plans… just need to wake up Catherine and Shelby for these next ones and we’re set.
As I reflect back upon this year, on my year as a member of the Ruka, I am so grateful for my fellow community members, for McNary-Zak, for the professors and community leaders we’ve had over for dinner, for our life together.