I recently moved from Scarborough (near Toronto) to Ottawa to start my professional studies. Having lived in Scarborough my whole life, the prospect of moving away was exciting but certainly also daunting. Leaving behind all the connections I had made in life up to that moment was a huge challenge, and I certainly felt it. Towards the beginning of my time away, I was overwhelmed with a powerful sense of loneliness. I was meeting a ton of new people during orientation, but it was sometimes tough to develop substantial, holistic connections with my classmates.
One day, an acquaintance of mine from elementary school who now lives in Ottawa reached out to me, offering to hang out. We hadn’t been exceptionally close before, but it was nonetheless an exciting prospect to touch base.
When we met up, we started talking about life in Ottawa, life in Scarborough, and our interests as students. Then eventually, our conversation took a turn, and we began to discuss faith, politics (for better or for worse), and our families. Pleasantly and freakishly, we were both struck by the incredibly high symmetry between us. I’ve often struggled to find folks with whom I can honestly discuss my thoughts on so many different ideas and be met with such similar inclinations. Of course, exposure to a variety of viewpoints is critically important, but it is also nice to have friends who are on the same wavelength, people who just get you.
After our time together, I felt refreshed. When I later reflected on our meeting, I realized with a powerful conviction that the Father had this planned all along, probably way before I even knew I’d be studying in Ottawa. Truly, those sorts of surprises really do sneak up on us, but once they arrive, they bring along with them a warming sense of peace. Deo gratias.
Lucas A.G. Corallo is a first year medical student at the University of Ottawa. Through his adventures and acquaintances (most recently having become a parishioner at Immaculate Heart of Mary in Ottawa), he hopes to continually learn and grow as he journeys through his pilgrimage.
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