I’ve been thinking about how incredibly fragile our reality is. I’m not talking about the reality of the entire world, or the stuff on television, but rather that little puddle of life each of us creates for ourselves.
We each weave our own unique reality—a web consisting of our beliefs, perceptions, preferences, fears and experiences. It is held together by our personal interpretation of the world around us, and is as unique as each of us.
I used to believe that I could be the captain of my own ship, and that I would control its course, but I’ve come to learn that events over which I have absolutely no control, can alter, redesign and redefine the parameters of my life.
It’s the phone call at 2:14 a.m.
It’s the knock on the door—the messenger of tragedy.
It’s a skipped heartbeat, a missed signal, or the raspy, shaking, too-soft voice, sagging under a burden of deep sorrow.
How can we protect ourselves, and our secure little realities, from the harbingers of change and that haunting, empty feeling of loss?
In most cases we can’t. I guess we might try to not pay attention to it, pretending everything is the same, but, really, who do we fool? If your house is built on shifting sand, sooner or later, you’re going to need a shovel and a realtor
Life comes with lumps—there’s no need trying to hide it or deny it.
All too often, it the lumps in our lives have a tendency to ripple outward and disturb the tranquility of the lives of those around us. Our turmoil contaminates their serenity and damages their fragile web.
In the end, I think there are only two things we can do to survive the storms. First, I’m thinking we’ve gotta develop and perfect the art of rolling with the punches. Life isn’t for cowards, and developing a few emotional calluses can go a long way towards smoothing out some of the bumps.
The second is that we need to try hard—very, very hard—to insure that our ripples and storms don’t interrupt the tranquility of the realities of those around us. Sometimes, the magnitude of the storm cannot be controlled, and we will need the help and hope of others. Such is the cost of friendship and family.
Life will hand each of us some difficult and tragic burdens, but contrary to the old saying, I’m thinking misery doesn’t necessarily love company. True, we all need the help and support of others, but I’ve think that in most cases, we’ve each been given the strength and courage to shoulder our share of the load.
Our reality, as fragile and elusive as a whispered promise, is always at risk, but it is ours, and ours alone.