Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Impossible Dream

When it comes to the things we want, there always seems to be an endless list.

It seems that as soon as the goal of one accomplishment or achievement is reached, we replace it with another, seemingly impossible one.

I keep lists in my BlackBerry of things to do, films to watch, home improvements to make, and plans for the distant future. Once a list begins to seem stagnant, I update it and prioritize it again, adding other items and allowing myself to believe that this newly updated list has conquered the previous one, and off goes the Don Quixote in my mind to battle the windmills once again.

In life, this drama of wanting and getting and wanting is all part of the dance. The things we want motivate us to get up and get them. Yet, at the same time, we can torment ourselves with our wanting, especially when we want something we can’t have or can’t find. It is in cases like these that it might be fruitful to entertain the idea that maybe what we really want is right in front of us. Perhaps we even utilize this desire we can’t fulfill to distract us from truly engaging the blessings we already have.

It may seem as though that does not make sense, yet we do it all the time. It may be easier to see it in other people than to see it in ourselves. We have all heard our friends wishing they were more this or less that. Meanwhile, looking at them we see clearly that they are everything they are wishing they were. We know people who are in wonderful situations and yet envy ours. We wish we could give these people a look at their lives from our perspective so that they could see that what they want really is right in front of them.

It is not too far-fetched to consider that we might be victims of the same folly. It can be scary to have what we want. We become caught up in the chase and forget to enjoy the beauty right in front of us, like a child who never wants the toy in hand but always the one just out of reach.

My dog has a large basket filled with toys. His favorite is a hedgehog that grunts when squeezed. He has two of them, but if he has one and I take the other, he wants the one that I have. This dance continues until I tire of it, give him both, and walk away. He then wants neither one.

This may be amusing or comical, but it also serves as a commentary. Perhaps he never wanted either hedgehog. Perhaps he just wanted what he already had … the person who walked away.

Too often we lose sight of what we have. Our loved ones -- partners, families, and friends -- are here with us and we have worked hard at building and maintaining these relationships. How often we leave them to the side while we pursue our quests. What if they were to walk away and never return?

Perhaps today we can learn to consider the many pleasures we have in our lives and how we might best enjoy them.

With love & Light,


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