I’m headed into the home stretch of my year without complaining. The fourth quarter starts this week. It has been an intriguing year.
I began nobly; but had a brief early relapse into what Jane Williams described as “talking about what you’re not going to complain about”. Her comment hit my nail squarely on its pointed little head. I pulled myself back from that particular edge.
My best posts, in my exceedingly humble and nonbiased opinion, don’t mention this journey at all. Gary Bollinger said once that I describe better than I pontificate — or words to that effect. I agree with him. But I intended this journey to be both illustrative and contemplative, so a bit of commentary must be undertaken.
I’ve been grateful for everyone who reads my posts and for those who, in response, reach out to me. I take everyone’s thoughts to heart. I draw comfort from the kindnesses; ponder the gentle critiques; and feel humbled by the praise. Dennis Lisenby paid me a singular compliment when he observed that I spoke publicly of struggles that many resist pursuing even internally. My reasons for exposing the rawness of my personal journey center on the goal of this undertaking. I strive to learn to live without complaining. I want my quest to help others; and I want to be accountable for my failures as well as encouraged by my successes.
Symbols often resonate with me, and few more than the butterfly. It spends two weeks in its chrysalis and lives less than a month after its lovely transformed self emerges. But oh, what brave beauty! And what contrast between its early self and the gossamer wings which unfold, soft and fragile, from inside the darkness!
As this year of not complaining wanes, I feel that I still huddle inside the protective silk that I’ve spun around myself. When I finally come into the light, perhaps I, too, will spread my wings, shaking off the debris that clings to me. Perhaps I will lift myself into the shimmering air around me, soaring, pausing now and then to balance on a delicate flower so that those who both shared and inspired my journey can see what I have become.