Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Life, Up Close

Our son took us to a presentation of The Secret Garden and obtained front row seats at the college theater, a gesture which was not lost on me. I love plays and the closer I sit, the more I enjoy it.

The play commenced with women attending a party in the garden. As they stood mere inches away from me, I, an aficionado of fabrics, designs, and craftsmanship looked over the costumes carefully. The dresses in blues and pinks and other pastels displayed long sleeves, lace and full skirts. How lovely, I thought. I looked closer. Much to my disappointment, I saw tears in the hems, crooked seams and missing lace. Obviously, the dresses or costumes showed wear and tear. Although it was a natural occurrence for clothes taken out of the theater’s wardrobe, I felt like one feels when an unexpected horrible and hurtful truth is told. An exposure I found hard to deal with.

But isn’t life like this? You have a girlfriend whose company you really enjoy, and then one day she lies, breaks off your lunch date and goes off to lunch with another friend. Or the boyfriend who tells you he is working at a project, and you hear he is actually with another girl. Same thing. When you get up close to the situation you see the truth. It’s just like looking into a magnifying mirror. All the flaws glare at you and you are suddenly shocked at the realization that you hadn’t seen what was really there. Perhaps you hadn’t noticed the flaws before or maybe you had just looked the other way.

Either way, the truth socks you like water splashing you when a car runs over a large puddle of water on the street which you failed to notice as you walked by. And there you are, stunned, frightened and not certain what to do next.

What to do? After mulling this over I’ve decided I still want to sit up close to the action. I want to be as close to life as I can be. Throw the truth at me. I can handle it. Surely, knowing and seeing the truth is better than believing in something and then finding out the truth later. That could hurt more. As I said before, just put me on the front row on the stage of life. I want to see and hear everything. I know all is not perfect nor is it supposed to be. I am ready to take what comes.

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