This I Believe

Shawn - Merced, California
Entered on September 23, 2006
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: change

This I believe that we want to be open to events that strike us as bad. In his poem, “If” Rudyard Kipling implores us to “treat triumph and disaster just the same.” Joseph Luciani showed us in his that it is not the event, but how we INTERPRET it that makes us feel good or bad. Chris Prentiss says when an event strikes you as bad to wonder what good will come from it.

Case in point, when my significant-other pointed out some shade tree near the exit from Merced Community College where I work, I knew we would save time, avoid traffic if we met there daily. That morning I lamented the loss of my perfect bench next to toilet and cafeteria, comfortable, clean. This change was the bad event. Small,negative. Fast forward to several weeks later, I am sitting on a a comfortable, natural bench – the stretched out scar – of a long ago sheared offlimb in the center of the olive tree, in the heart of it. I am shrouded by a canopy of olives and olive leaves on the old, thick, umbrella-like limbs. Looking up, I see a kaleidoscope of green hues where twinkling, yellow sunlight beams, patterns change as the cool, summer breeze shifts the twigs and small branches.

It’s lovely and beautiful. I am fully secluded and tranquil. I stroke the nearest of many olive shoots encirling the tree.

They rise up from the gnarly, knotty roots which rise from in the soil looking like lumpy,elephant legs disappearing into the trunk. I musingly claim this tree for my kingdom, survey my palatial grounds and, deciding it’s as nice as those of European palace grounds I have frequented- I claim it too.

However, I live in dread of the fall rains-a bad event, indeed.

This I believe.

How will I stand the happiness that comes from that change and loss?