Saturday, December 31, 2005

pressing on

I think when ’05 stole in across the back yard, I was about 32 years old. As ’06 makes its way over the eastern horizon, I’m around 55. I’m tired and aged. I feel every one of the 41 birthdays that have clicked like a metronome set at 120 bpm. Someone keeps pulling the little slider thing down, and it’s getting more difficult to keep tempo. One tends to drop more notes the faster the tempo goes.
This has no doubt been the hardest year of my life for lots of reasons. I have grown more in the past 12 months than I’ve grown in all my previous 40 years combined. There are still areas of me that are unaffected by that growth, and if you look at me I probably look quite deformed with such retarded growth set alongside such rapid growth. Maybe like a little puppy whose future size can be estimated by his oversized paws.
I remember various periods of time between about 9 years old and 12 or 13, when my legs and joints ached acutely from growth. Growth is painful. I’ve felt it this year. Growing knowledge of my weakness, boundaries, shortcomings. Growing understanding of who I am and who I should be. Growing understanding of my place in my context. Growing passion for what could or should be, growing intolerance for what is that shouldn’t be.
Who you are supposed to be is not always who people want you to be. It’s not always who YOU want to be for that matter. And becoming that person is a very difficult prospect. I set my face toward that goal with more determination than ever in ’05. I’ve done very poorly, but have a much clearer perspective on who it is and what it takes to become.
At the dawn of ’05, I embraced the new, practically challenged - begged even - for the old to burn away and to be ushered into the new, but I had no idea what great strength and perseverance would be required to survive the flames and rise from the ashes. But I am determined to rise beautiful from the ashes and to bring as many up with me as possible, dusting ourselves off as we take wing.
So an assessment of ’05 doesn’t show any arrival or attainment, only another leg of a long and grueling marathon. So tonight, as I run by the hydration table, I reach out to grab a drink, but keep moving forward, legs aching, feet burning. Pressing on toward the mark of the high calling…
To be continuing…