Whether we are 26, 66 or 96, one thing is certain, and that is that our lives have held a LOT of change. Events come and go, relationships come and go, hobbies, passions and desires all come and go. We seem to navigate the vast majority of these “releasings” without much fuss; they are just a part of the flow of any ordinary life. But there are other times when the required letting go is done only with great dread, reluctance and stubborn unwillingness. Let us look together at ways we can minimize the pain of those times, and perhaps learn to be just a bit more welcoming of all the inevitable releasings, large and small, we must each bear in the course of a lifetime.
The Rev. Dottie Mathews, and her wife, Rosie Geiser, joined the ranks of “the blissfully retired” in July of 2015 and soon thereafter relocated to Central Missouri after living many years in Appleton, Wisconsin. This happy move came after Dottie retired from her position as the workplace Chaplain for Goodwill of North Central Wisconsin, where she led a team of five people providing holistic care and support for over 1400 Goodwill team members across 35 Wisconsin counties. Prior to that position, Dottie served as the Associate Minister with the Fox Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Appleton, where her primary role was providing pastoral care for the members and friends of that large congregation. Regardless of title or locale, Dottie sees “compassionate listening” as the core and call of her ministry and she and her family are delighted to now be part of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Columbia, Missouri, where she is currently offering pastoral support during their minister’s parental leave.