Friday Thoughts: The Journey

It is once more that time of year. The part of the year where social media feeds are filled with one of three things: engagement announcements, baby announcements, university enrollment announcements.

And of course, each post has likes, hearts, and comments posting love and best wishes. We join in and comment.

Some of us see the news with a great smile. Others may see these announcements as painful reminders. We’re not where we want to be or with who we want to be.

But that’s okay.

We just need a little patience. In May 2016 I graduated from college. I had hopes that I would have a job after a month. Half a year later and I may have my one love in my life. A year after that I would be making a sizable dent in my school debt. That was my hope.

A year later I was still jobless, no love interest, and had not even started on paying back my loans.

It was only in April that I finally landed a job. Life is still not going the way I would like it to go but that is okay. But I remember something a Baby Boomer told me: Everyone has to pay their dues.

What does that mean?

It means each and everyone else has to go through a trial. It doesn’t matter who we are or what we applied for, we have paths we must travel. Whether we are the reporter stuck with boring stories or the medical student going through residency. The art student working as a graphic designer or the writer being denied. We must bear our burden and walk this path.

Tolkien did not sit down one day and write a generation-spanning novel. Einstien did not solve the mysteries of the math world overnight. We may see it as an instant success but it is not.

True greatness comes not from glory but from hard work.

As much as I wish that I could just skip the pain and reach the perfect happy place, this trial of fire can be beneficial.

We gain a better appreciation for our job, empathy for what others are going through, and perspective on our own circumstances.

And as tempting as it is to take a short cut it is not worth it. You will always be found out. No matter how long it takes, the truth will come out. The longer it takes to find out, the greater the fall will be.

So be patient. Be diligent. Learn what you can at each stage.

Friends

No wit to write
No thought to ponder
Just a desire to slumber

No want for games to play
No series that I must see
Just a desire to sleep

No desire to talk all night
No want to read by moonlight
Just a need to sleep

Then a friend calls
And I come awake
A grin upon my face
Without a thought of sleep

Hours upon hours
We talk and talk
No thought given for time
No worry given for tomorrow

Just talk and talk
Till the moon has set
And the dawn breaks

Still I smile
Still I wake without complaint
For good friends are worth
The long hours at night

Winter’s Tears

Winter cried
Winter weeped
For the people said
That they despised him
He is cold
His long
We cannot bear it any longer

Winter tried to be sweet
And tried to be short
Yet still the people complained
The road is covered in slush
And the children are cold
Why must we have Winter
Why can we not have Summer

So the people called out
To the Maker of all
Make it so that Winter is gone
Make it so that snow never comes
And the weather stays warm all year

Such was the clamoring
Such was the out cry
That Winter weeped and howled
Ice came in sheets
And snow fell by the yard

The people grew angry
And demand it be changed
So the Maker did as they asked
And forbade Winter to come again

With hurt and sorrow
Winter left, leaving a trail of ice and cold
The people rejoiced!
For Summer lasted longer
And the year was kinder

So the years went by
And the people sang
But little by little
Did things begin to change

Crops became weaker each year
And the trees began to whiter and die
Animals became deadlier
And killed more and more
As time went by

The people wondered
The people pondered
Why had the animals grown so terrible
Why were the trees dying
And the crops filling
Why had the river lost her depth

Should not the longer warmth
Be better for all
Surly they should rejoice and thrive
Yet the forrest decayed
And the rivers faded
The birds dwindled as they stayed
And the animals invaded new areas

Finally they asked the Maker
Why had their valley changed

With calm and patience
Did he explain

Winter gave the fields time to rest
Winter allowed the trees to sleep
And the animals their goodbyes

Winter took home those who were failing
And renewed the earth so she could sustain
The rivers ranked from the snow he gave
And the birds knew to leave at his breath

As Summer gives time for growth
And Spring time for birth
And Fall time for change
So does Winter give something in turn

Each season, though varied by place
Has a role to play

Summer grows but takes away from the soil
Spring births but demands tribute from land
Fall ends that whose story is closing
But Winter begins again all that is

So the people understood
That each season had a reason
Not all is good and to be welcomed
Nor it was to be a joy
But Winter was no less important
For the pain he brought

So the Maker called back Winter
And he came when he heard his name
His eyes grew most and his heart rent
At the suffering he saw
With his tears and his touch
Did snow, ice, and cold did come

Thus the land slept
And so the trees regained their strength
And the river regained her power
Though the people still complained
They understood at long last
The part he played

Dwarven Art

Dig deep
Dig long
Mine the ore
Stroke the fire
Choose carefully
Take the metal
Make it pure
Into the fire
Into the mold
Hammer it
Shape it
Forge it new
Take the time
Make it right
From dawn to dusk
All night long
Hammer
Forge
Shape
Formed and carved
Till metal shaped
Till art is done
No rust can touch
No length of time weaken
Strong as stone
Beautiful as light
A race long forgotten
Its art long remembered

Being Old Enough

Yesterday I was reading the book Star Wars X-Wing: Starfighters of Adumar by Aaron Allston. In the story, the character Wedge Antilles said the following:

“you’re always going to be too young for something important to you, too old for something else, and the timing is just not going to be right for a third set of things. That’s life, and you can make yourself crazy by dwelling on that. Or you can figure out what you are the right age for, and what the timing is right for, and celebrate those things. Where do you suppose happiness lies?”

The quote got me thinking: how much time do we waste thinking about stuff we can’t do?

I know I’ve done that, especially right now in my season of post-college. Right now I want to go see friends out of state, move into my own place, and have my own internet! But I can’t. The timing isn’t right. When I was younger, I wanted to be old enough to sign my own permission slip or go on the big rides (by the way, not worth getting older for. Just saying).

I guess this is a reminder to trust in God and be happy in the moment. Not necessarily be completely at peace or content to stay as is but find the stuff that I can do.

I can’t own my own place but I can write and work on projects. I can’t afford my own internet but I do have books I can read and movies I can watch. I can’t drive to see friends in person right now but I can send them Facebook messages.

I really don’t want to be the one who looks back on their life and realizes that I spent so much time being anxious for things that I wasn’t old enough or had the time for that I didn’t enjoy the stuff I could. Or worse, find myself to enjoy the stuff I could have done back then.

So here is to enjoying and doing the stuff I can. The rest will come into play when I can do them. If not, well then there is something better for me to do.

Morning Sunrise

morning pink and blue sunrise

Get up and go.

That’s what our society is. We have our lists to do, to buy, and to get done.

Pay the bills, get the kids ready, go grocery shopping, find that missing shoe, and mail Grandma’s birthday card.

We rush through life getting things done. Post this, like that. Watch the video.

And I am guilty of it. I use a service called Asana. On Asana, I have a to do list, my homework, and my blog assignments. But then I woke up Sunday morning at seven in the morning and headed out the door. I had my whole list of things that I needed to get done.

I saw the Sunrise and stopped for a moment. I thought it was beautiful but I wanted to keep moving.

I didn’t have time to waste on a Sunrise.

With those words echoing in my head, I stopped with my hand on the door handle to my vehicle.

I didn’t have time to watch a sunrise. I am a photographer. I love it and I can’t imagine life without it. And I was shocked that I didn’t want to pause a moment and enjoy the sun.

And I took several pictures.

I didn’t spend a lot of time but enough time to slow down. My stress went down and I enjoyed the rest of the day and not feel rushed.

And maybe that is what we all need to do. Take a moment and enjoy the life that we are part of.