While Community is a show I have come to love on NBC this year, it is also something much more. I increasingly find it to be something for which I deeply yearn. I’m not entirely sure of how to define community, but it is something that I have experienced in real and profound ways at times in my life. It is also something I have felt lacking at times in my life.
I have found myself reflecting on community quite a bit today after spending time in a small Kansas town this morning talking to hospital staff about the possibility of opening an IMS clinic there. The conversation around the table was, to a small degree, about how to make sure that the clinic was a revenue producer for the hospital. It was, to a much larger degree, about how to make a difference in the community with any program that might be implemented. The Physician at the table serves on the school wellness council and was excited about connections that could exist there. One of the nurses spoke of potential community partnerships and people she knew from her church who would be interested in something like the clinic might offer. In conversation it was clear that this was a community – people worked together, went to church together, shopped for groceries together, and generally had a greater level of investment in each other’s lives than has been my experience living in suburbia these last years.
And then I begin to reflect on my experiences growing up in a small town and remember all that was frustrating and at times felt negative about people living in such close proximity and relationship to one another on so many interconnected levels. I do yearn for community. I am also cautious about some of the frustrations that I remember from small town life. And so I continue to wonder about community, what it means, and what it would look like to truly live in such relationships with others.
Heather and I are in the midst of preparations for another move. Yup, that’s tic-tac-toe; three summers in a row.
In mid-March Heather took a full time job in Lawrence (in addition to the part time job she was already working in Lawrence). Currently she drives from KC to the far west side of Lawrence 6 days a week, which has got to change…
Since the latter part of last year I’ve been working for a start-up called Innovative Metabolic Solutions. We are based out of Lawrence and have grown to the point now where I’ll be moving from a consulting role to full time in June.
It will be good to be Lawrence residents once we get through this move! We have calculated that as a family we’ll save roughly 12 hours a week that we’re now in the car and will no longer need to be. I can’t wait!
Hannah’s life is full of transitions each day as well: new words, new animal sounds, new connections in her brain, new heights (which mean new things to hit her head on). It is all good. Very good.
Having not blogged for nearly four and a half months I was almost a little embarrassed to see last night that Jimmy Moore had given Changing to Bring Change a shout-out as he headed off to NYC for some planning time with the Metabolism Society.
When I saw this last night I promised myself that I would blog today to acknowledge this great acknowledgement. When I woke up this morning I had an email from Keith, a new colleague from Microsoft with whom I’ve recently had some exciting conversations. ”You could have told us about your blog, Jeff” was the subject of his email. Apparently it’s time to start generating some content here that others might be interested in reading.
So, if you wonder what I’ve been up to these last months I’ve been ramping up my work with Innovative Metabolic Solutions. I have been very excited about this company since they got started and am now thrilled to be working as their VP of Client Relations. When asked what this means I commonly say, “I manage relationships.” If you’re interested in more of the gory details look me up. Yeah, we know the website leaves a lot to be desired – we’re working on that. We’re also working on training docs, implementing/managing metabolic management clinics, developing relationships in a variety of settings, developing an exciting and dynamic database, and pretty much trying to change the way we do health care as a country. It’s a fun time to be doing this work!