Endings are autumn’s dominant metaphor from the leaves falling from trees to the sun going down earlier and earlier. We go back to school, at least some of us, we harvest our gardens, put away the summer pots, and some choose that moment to end things in life. When I attended mass, the first reading always came from the book of revelation, the end of all things, the moment of unveiling and Jesus coming back to set things right. The last part sounds pleasant, and I could use a second-coming at the moment if only to surprise the smug Christians of all stripes voting for an anti-Christ year in the states last year.
Lately, those revelations, the endings of things, happen on a small scale. Relationships shatter, leaving some to pick up the pieces. Mostly, it’s ways of looking at people and the world, a painful lesson I learn again and again. The challenge comes from grabbing a little bit of optimism to go with a more pragmatic view of topics. Without it, we turn hard and cynical, unable to process new beauty even in things like love.
I still have romantic notions yet not anxious to join a dating site or jump back into the pool. I instead build my own life and meet new people, try new things, and guys my age seem content to find someone to take care of them. I have done enough caretaking in my life thank you very much. Last week, I shared a TED talk as a metaphor for the work I do as a library technician. Since my 2009 graduation, the shiny finish has worn off slightly in this new career but I learned never to think well, this is the way it will always be I guess. The moment that happens, it’s like a completed jigsaw puzzle gets torn apart and flipped, usually in beautiful ways. Either way, it means taking the pieces and putting them back together again.
A long time ago, someone asked me how I can be upbeat all the time. I couldn’t tell this person the truth, sometimes I find myself in shades of gray, other times nearly drowning in black. Music always threw a lifeline, the right song, at the right time, usually a dance beat, and lyrics to match, no matter the repetition.
Today’s selection will hopefully be a lifeline, to believe things will be OK, not perfect, not an ending taken from a novel, just OK enough to keep going until stumbling turns into walking upright again.