Comparison is the thief of joy.
~ Theodore Roosevelt
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what I want to be when I grow up. Heaven knows I don’t want to be a
data collector teacher forever. I have no shortage of interests..photography, calligraphy, knitting…All of which I have gotten my feet wet with in the past. Well, not so much knitting, but my mom was a co-owner of a yarn & fabric shop for many years. She used to knit me the most gorgeous sweaters when I was in high school and college, so does that count? Anyway, when I get online and start looking around at what other people are doing, I can’t help but think to myself: Boy howdy, how do they do that? And then what follows is a cascade of feelings that go something like this: Oh I could never learn how to do that or I’m not creative enough to produce that or jeepers I don’t have that kind of talent…and if I’m not careful, on and on it goes.. In my younger days, I would fall into that trap time and again. Ohh, what’s that Lucy, a football to kick?
Fortunately I’m old enough and wise enough to put a stop to it all and I remember a few things. Sometimes (audibly) I’ll say to myself in the manner that we all want and hope for Charlie Brown himself to shout out: Wait, wait, wait. Wait just a cotton-pickin’ minute here! And I begin to take stock…
Here is what I know for sure:
- Almost two years ago, I was told I had high cholesterol and needed to go on medicine for it. Instead, I changed what I put on my plate, and changed my health.
- A long walk every day is good for the mind.
- A hike in the woods a few times a week is good for the soul.
- Sometimes we need to put down the device and remember that what’s online is usually everyone’s best version of themselves, and that we are all human.
So this week when I forgot to take photos of the paleo pork recipe that I made, and didn’t adequately meal plan like a good functional medicine patient, and left my laptop at the wrong school like a hurried itinerant teacher, instead of measuring myself by someone else’s yardstick, I just had to throw my hands up and say Oh. Well.
I decided to embrace the day and the sunshine with the same joy that my dog does:
And sit for a minute and enjoy the view:
And tell those I love how special they are to me:
Then suddenly I remembered the words of Joseph Campbell: The privilege of a lifetime is being who we are.
And all was right in the world again.