During my last MT gig, I learned a universal and undeniable truth: everyone has a story. In a follow up post, I'll explore how I learned those lessons. For now, a few thoughts about those stories we all have.
The idea for this post came to me at a restaurant.
I was sitting perpendicular to a table with a large indigenous family...at least twenty people celebrating a child's birthday.
After the cake was served, a couple of the younger kids, three years old or so, started chasing each other...crawling.
I kept glancing at the kids and smiling. A couple of the moms saw me looking and got up and put a stop to the chase.
I don't know if the parents were embarrassed by the behavior or if they didn't appreciate the guy sitting alone in the restaurant looking at their kids.
Then I thought back to something another white teacher said to me. She got the impression that a lot of the indigenous families in the area are strict with their kids...maybe I was witnessing a cultural expression.
I wanted to say, "Your kids are cute! I'm far away from my family and seeing your kids happy gives me hope that maybe my kids are happy too!"
But it seemed out of place to intervene in their parenting...especially not knowing their stories.
It's for similar reasons that I try to make friends with every dog I see...so I don't miss the furry friends I left behind. Or the reason I smile when I see a couple holding hands or talking sweetly in hushed tones. I remember how good it is to be with the love of my life.
I think about the line from the Bon Jovi song Bed of Roses, "As I dream about movies they won't make of me when I'm dead."
He viewed his life as a story, just as I do. I can't count how many times I say something like, "I guess that's part of my story" or sometimes our story when talking with my wife.
I share bits of my story with people here...I'm newlywed, away from my wife and kids...I smile when kids are being joyful children...
Almost as an afterthought, I enjoy "The Most Interesting Man in the World." One of his thoughts seems appropriate here: "It's never too early to start beefing up your obituary."
What will your obituary say?
What's your story?
If you don't like it, change the plot,.change the characters, but YOU write it.
Live your story every day!