Have you seen the Kid President video yet?
I held off at first as it circled our statuses and tweets but then had the video emailed my way by a few trusted sources. So I took a look and am (oh) so glad I did! Not cool Robert Frost!! What I love a whole lot is the concluding “pass it on” message; we are prompted by someone probably one quarter our age to put our appreciation on display and, in doing so, we’re carving out doorways in the walls we built around our precious selves.
I’m so much better at protecting and defending than sharing and communing. I’m talking Girl Scout badges in “Me & Mine!!!” Just like the rest of us, I’ve more than occasionally been the recipient of misplaced anger, which generalizes my response and makes someone telling me a truth that I need to hear tougher than necessary. Just the other night I (stupidly!!) checked my email before dozing off and saw that a “no” had been sent my way on something I put out there. This was enough to send me to sleep cursing everyone involved and brooding under my covers.
So we curse and brood, forget “we’re all on the same team” and disconnect, not necessarily by intentionally ending relationships but by completely removing ourselves from the game. Then a child comes along with the reminder that it isn’t about you and you and me and me. It’s about us.
Yesterday I was reading this at …In the Meantime. If you don’t have time to click and read, it’s a reflection on what we fondly recall as the “THEY CUT A HOLE IN THE CEILING!!!” story from the bible. As a littler me, I remember being totally torn up over this one, over friends who love someone so much they want to see him better. Friends who push forward, get angry, and then get a plan. Maybe they’re out of ideas and this Jesus guy is a last ditch effort. We do things we would never consider in our “right” minds when someone we love is dying. So like our kid president friend, these people make a doorway and the healing (and other good stuff) begins.
We’re at that last ditch place here, friends. We tried everything to have both world peace and our individual spot in the winner’s circle. We convinced ourselves that if I do well enough, we will be OK. And something we loved more than life itself broke so we built walls nice and thick to keep all the bad out. Maintenance on these walls, these spots, and our reputations as been a very tall order.
It’s time to look back on this, say to ourselves, “I love you but you don’t know what you’re talking about”, and try something crazy, like being a little more gracious.
At the start of the year I decided to substitute resolution-making for finding 10 truths we can all agree on. I’m still working on nine of these… The best I can come up with is that the majority of us are trying our best and when I hold all of our choices in this understanding, I’m a little more graceful, I forget about the winner’s circle for a second, and I start looking for a door.
At first people refuse to believe that a strange new thing can be done, then they begin to hope it can be done, then they see it can be done–then it is done and all the world wonders why it was not done centuries ago.
The Secret Garden