Wednesday, 25 September 2013

The Big Picture

It is so important in life to keep the Big Picture in mind.

Sometimes we get caught up in the little things.  We make them huge, monstrous, terrible things.  They stress us out, keep us up at night, shorten our patience and tempers and grind at us every minute of every day.  They might seem important, but when you look at the big picture, they really are insignificant after all.

Sometimes we get caught up in big things.  Life throws us a curveball that knocks us down flat.  The road we were travelling suddenly ends and we can't even see a fork in the road, just thick, heavy brush that is going to need a machete to cut a path.  The task ahead is so daunting and scary that we freeze up.    It might seem insurmountable, but when you look at the big picture, the days will pass and life will move on after all.

Sometimes we might get hit with something that really is tragic.  These are the life and death matters, the illnesses or accidents that permanently alter our lives.  These are events that really can't be worked through with determination or changed with a different perspective.  These are times in our life when emotion takes control and in order to continue you must alter the way you looked at life.  It might seem inconceivable, but when you look at the big picture, the terrible things fade into nothing and only the joys remain in memory.

I am learning that life is not a straight line.  That might seem safest, but it is rarely the case anymore.  But change is not failure.  Each event in our life serves a purpose, and who we are at the end of our lives is the culmination of each of those events.  I am not a filmmaker, but that doesn't mean 4 years of film school were a waste of time; that's where I met my husband.  I was let go unexpectedly from my job in advertising just after I was married, but that doesn't mean I failed at my job; it's just that I was done spending time in that corner of life.  I'm not teaching piano right now, but that doesn't mean I'm not an excellent piano player or that I don't love music.  When life hiccups, you don't have to stand still, frozen, until something aligns in front of you.

I like the analogy that life is like those little wooden blocks that babies love to play with - you know, the ones with the painted letters and numbers on the sides?  Each block is some area of your life, some person you know, some job, some stage, some hobby, and each one is added to the next, building a taller and taller tower.  Some blocks are big, the ones that are always a part of your life.  Some blocks are small, something that is in your life for but a short season.  Some blocks are repetitive, things that come and go, but always seem to find their way back to you.  Each of these blocks is an important part of the culmination of who you are.  You can't wish any one of them away because the whole tower would topple.

So what do these musings me for me?  I want to embrace life's changes.  Whether it's moving houses, moving cities, moving countries, new jobs, new careers, new education, new friends, new family, new interests, new hobbies, new stages of life - be it exciting or scary or, more likely, a little of both, embrace it.  Endings are just the start of new beginnings.

No comments: