I can’t tell you where I am this morning. Let’s just say “a waiting room”. Waiting for my eldest daughter. I’ve written off work for the morning to sit here, waiting – I filled in my “out of office”.
She struggles to play a part in “the world” as easily as you or I might. That’s why we’re here. But we’re here – that’s the important thing. We hold on to every inch of progress.
It’s interesting how we all deal with the world, isn’t it. Everybody does it in different ways. Some people focus on themselves, some people focus on others, some people worry about everything they do – about how it will be seen – and others seem to worry about very little. I guess some struggle to figure out any sort of strategy, and that’s how we end up here.
I’m reminded of the Shakespeare quote – about each person playing many parts during their lifetime. We really do. Most of us wear many hats, and choose which one to wear depending on the company, and the situation. If we’re very lucky we know one or two people that don’t require a hat. Hats are exhausting sometimes.
I’m kind of reflective today. I think I know why.
Dooce died. Heather Armstrong.
I saw the breaking news story last night. Back when I was starting out with blogging in the early 2000s, I knew her a little bit. We were all kind of finding our way with this new medium – sharing thoughts, ideas, and stripping back the layers of acting. We were all figuring out what a blog actually was – how much you could share – what stories you could tell.
She had no filter. Her blog was a firehose of truth and honesty. She wrote wonderfully. She never set out to become famous, but she ended up atop the pyramid so many jealous citizen journalists constructed when writing breathlessly about her shared car-crash life.
I wrote recently – that too many people are dying. People I know. People I knew. It brings into focus that you really don’t get another chance at this. An urgency of sorts. A refactoring of that which is important.
While sitting here, various people are wandering past. They all seem kind. Perhaps I just tend to see the kindness in others? Maybe that’s my thing. I don’t tend to subscribe to having any sort of purpose though – and wonder if anybody really does. We’re all kind of making it up as we go along, aren’t we?
There are some posters on the wall in the waiting room – not really motivational posters – more mindfulness. One says “Kindness should become the natural way of life. Not the exception”. While I can agree with that, I also know that the real world is a good deal more complicated than a quote on a poster might have you believe. The counter is obviously “sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind” – which flies in the face of the first quote.
Why is it guidance always takes the form “always do this – unless that happens”? That’s not always then, is it.