Thursday, October 21, 2010

Clear Vision

I have poor night vision. Because of this reason, I don’t particularly like to drive at night, unless an emergency arises. I have even gone as far as exploring my options of owning different gadgets that can make night driving easier, but once I took a look at the price tags, I quickly changed my mind. After all, I hardly ever need to drive at night.

Daytime driving is another business altogether. With three kids that seem to need to travel the world far and wide every day, and my own errands to run, I spend more time behind the wheel than I would like. But, let me not derail from the thought that led me here to start with.

The other day I was driving to go pick up my daughter from school, and since I left in a rush, I forgot my sunglasses. Not a big deal, I thought as I drove down the road. Well, I drove the two miles that separated me from the school and turned into the nearby neighborhood. I was suddenly blinded by sunshine and for a moment I could see absolutely nothing. So I slowed down, and as I did, I barely perceived a white car parked on the side of the road to my right. It’s a miracle I even saw it because the color of the car was completely washed out by the intensity of the light.

After I passed the car I thought of how interesting it is that there are times during the day when one can see even worse than at night. That fleeting thought, of course, led to more activity, and I was soon busy analyzing how even in life walking the middle lane is usually the best way to see things clearly. I suppose we can look at it in many ways – someone totally absorbed into the dark happenings of existence is usually too overwhelmed to see anything on his path but more and more darkness. When, on the other hand, one is too elevated and detached into the light, it is hard for him to be able to empathize with the darkness others are struggling through, and can see even less. Quite similarly, if one is always rejected and failing, he is probably blinded by the darkness of his perception of the self, but if one is too successful, even in this case, blindness is not too far behind.

Living an average life filled with a balance of woes and wows allows us to steer away from complete darkness, while still retaining a memory of what it is like to struggle and be fearful. Accepting a life which contains a bit of both allows us to move through obstacles more easily, and teaches us that life isn’t always dark or bathed in light. All days will perish at sunset and each night succumbs to the morning sun. Nothing lasts forever, and even a difficult situation will eventually turn when you least expect it, just as a wonderful outcome will probably not stay wonderful forever.

What counts is to live in the moment, and not forget that each moment that passes is a unique fraction of time that will never occur again.

Note to anyone that’s interested: This coming Saturday, Oct 23 I will be signing books at Northgate Books in Durham between the hours of 3 and 6pm. Also, the next Saturday, Oct 30, I will be at the Fall Festival in Fuquay Varina the whole day. I hope to see you there!

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