Before I share my five minutes of free writing, I want to share a tiny story.
It helps explain where my head is at today, which is overwhelmed by how complicated life really is.
I walked to the local burger joint to pick up a BLT this afternoon, and was approaching the front entrance when an elderly man offered to get the door for me.
Only he was the same exact distance away from the door as me, but moving at a considerably slower pace. (He probably limited himself to one cup of coffee this morning, unlike me all jacked up on two.)
Anyways, I rushed to the door not because I wanted to beat him to get in line, or because I'm some hardcore feminist that won't allow a man to do anything for me.
It's just that I was taught to respect my elders (which he clearly was, by 46 years I found out while he stood in line). The seniors always ate first at church potlucks.
So I wanted to hold the door open for him and let him go before me.
Only instead of it coming across as a gracious gesture, or one of respect, I'm pretty sure I crushed that poor little man's heart.
He looked so disappointed when I tried to hold the door open for him.
And while I waited for my to-go order I sat there riddled with guilt.
It seemed like the right thing, as I darted for the door.
I only wanted to open the door for him, the cute little man that looked like the grumpy gus from UP, whom I think all old men look like, but this one actually did, glasses and all.
Life isn't always easy.
And I kinda hate that.
Sometimes we face impossible decisions. Like which goes first, the old dude or the girl?
Or much more difficult ones.
I still don't know the answer to that question. And it kinda bugs me.
But the tough questions don't bother me quite as much as they used to.
And this - this prompt - this new view, might be why.
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I used to think life worked like the Highlights Magazine we received in the mail, or the Disney movies I knew by heart.
I thought good guys were easy to pick out, ‘cause they were usually wearing white hats, or giving girls glass slippers.
Bad guys were just as easy to spot in those days, with their red, evil eyes. Their cloaks. And their henchmen/hyennas/creepy eels.
But lately I’m thinking things aren’t as simple as they seemed to me as a kid.
Struggles are not at all the way Goofus and Gallant depicted them.
They're not nearly so straightforward.
Yea I still believe in right and wrong.
I still believe good and evil exist.
I just have doubts about the black and whiteness of it all.
Lately, my view is changing.
Lately, so much of life seems so very grey.
I would love to have a clear-cut guideline for how to make the right choice every in every situation.
But sometimes there aren’t wrong or right choices.
There are only choices.
A whole sea, sometimes, of grey choices.
There are good options, and better options.
Bad options. And worse options.
But those options aren’t always black and white.
The right decision isn’t always crystal clear.
Life is fuzzy.
Life is tough.
Life is filled with a whole slew of things that can’t be neatly categorized, problems that can't be resolved in a 30-minute sitcom, or a cliche-filled cartoon.
I used to love how simply I viewed the world.
But lately that worldview just doesn’t fit anymore.
And I’m growing, slowly, reluctantly okay with that.
Life is just life.
It’s black and white, and a million colors in between.
It’s grey sometimes.
But it’s good too.
Seeing things differently sometimes hurts like hell.
But it also means I’m still growing.
And there's something to be said for that.
It might even mean I’m growing up.
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For those of you interested, Five Minute Friday is a great group of mostly ladies who get together on Fridays to talk about a different topic each week.
The catch, or the beauty, of the bloghop is that you're supposed to write for five minutes flat. No editing. No second guessing. No worrying.
It's freeing. And wonderful. And a very supportive group of individuals if you're interested.
Happy holiday weekending friends, new and old.
Be safe, and relish this opportunity to spend extra time with loved ones.