This illustration popped into my head today and I really want to share it. It's funny that I have not thought of it in such a long time because I purposefully hung it at the bottom of our stairs so that I would see it every day and measure myself by it. I wanted to make sure that, no matter what the day had in store for me, I would try not to face it with this attitude. For a while I did notice it every day and if I was in a good mood I would laugh at this poor guy. Other days, when I was not in such a good mood I would see it, grumble a little, but still, straighten my back and push forward. And then, for a while, as is the potential with all things that we are surrounded by on a regular basis, I didn't see it at all.
At the bottom of the illustration it says, "I am a sulky and ill-humored man, and in this way I knock my head against the wall." And then, as if the lesson were not clear enough: " The angry protagonist will never butt through that brick wall."
The last few months have been chaotic. I have traveled to Chicago, Boston, Morocco and more. I have embedded myself in other people's families and watched them celebrate the newness and wonder of commitment. I have also watched old friends say good-bye to loved ones - parents who lived a full life and spouses who went too soon.
Then, on Friday, I got to see a beautiful, healthy, GIGANTIC baby be born to my cousin and his (heroic) wife. This birth felt like the climax, the punctation (an exclamation point, of course) to this period of time. It was as if all these stories were told again in watching a woman labor and give birth to a new life that started its own, new, story.
And I wonder, did I stop seeing this illustration because I FINALLY learned the lesson?