Welcome to Daily SPARC – each weekday our chaplains, friends from the Penn Religious Communities Council and other voices from campus will be posting messages of support and encouragement. 

Today’s message is by Sanjana Bijlani, Associate Director of Penn Women’s Center: 

I’ve been thinking about what it means to move with uncertainty, to give our attention to the work of self-reflection, to wonder about what we don’t know even when we’re scared about what might await us. Is it possible to sit with what is true in this moment while also leaving room to imagine what could be? In being honest about the textures of our experiences in the present, is it possible to wonder about what else we could invite for ourselves? Is it possible to grow my self-compassion in this moment even as I try to imagine a future where we can collectively grow our capacity to practice care for ourselves and with one another?

The more I ask myself these questions, the more grateful I am for the stillness of asking, of sitting in the space of what I don’t know without needing to find my way to certainty. In listening to what exists between asking and answering, I allow myself to keep learning. To never be sure of what I know, nor about what I don’t know. I give myself space to move towards possibility as slowly as I need to. I let myself say, I don’t know and let its gentle echo be enough. I know that I don’t have to choose one or the other, truth or wonder, this moment or the future. My hope is that we are able to give ourselves permission to be with our questions and where they may lead us.