Moving through a satisfying crowd at my Rotary meeting last evening, one after another asks how I am. Some have neither idea nor expectation of the range of potential responses. Okay, thanks, I say, over and over. Their response to my reciprocal query mirrors what I have said. Just fine, thanks.
Here and there I encounter someone who knows or cares more deeply about my life, and with whom my connection requires more exchange. One tells me of her relative’s surgery; another of her birthday celebration. A visitor explains about his new business while the person who brought him encourages the sharing with me, me in particular. I wanted you to hear this guy’s story, he says, because he knows that I appreciate a rousing tale of a self-made business owner.
At some point, I just stand. I’m astonished at the crowd that has gathered for our meeting. With over fifty members and only six months old, our Rotary Club has gotten national attention. But here in the crowd, at the Bar, during our social time, I’m taken by the seamlessness of it all. I’m feeling like a piece of a puzzle, the dog-chewed piece that’s been kicked under the dining room table and gathered dust. The youngest kid in the family reaches down one day and crows.
Here it is! she shrieks, and rushes to slip that missing piece into the picture. Ir’s a little ragged now, from weeks of getting shoved further back by people’s feet at dinner time. The colors have faded. But the nearly completed picture has been waiting, and the piece fits.
It’s the twenty-first day of the twenty-fifth month of My Year Without Complaining. Life continues.