Today was a travel day to Austin and back. It was one of those days I just didn’t feel like talking to anyone. Have you ever had one of those days?
It seemed as though everyone I came across was either pre-occupied with themselves or just staring off into space. Many were traveling for family, and me, being a business traveler, needed to think about what I had planned for the trip, my presentation, and other pressing work issues.
Looking around at the hordes of people, I did feel a sense of guilt not wanting to communicate anything more than a smile while I plugged in my headphones and avoided eye contact. I did help the occasional senior person along the way (not myself…), but that’s another story.
While standing in line, what kept coming to my mind was that empty feeling of isolation. Yes, I was to blame for not wanting to talk to anyone today, but the hollow sense it left inside of me didn’t give the end result I was hoping for.
One woman and her friend, who apparently were traveling together to visit family, couldn’t stop laughing at, well, just about anything! At first, it was annoying. Then, after watching the joy in their eyes while everyone around them was feeling the same as me, it became refreshing and made me long for fellowship.
Travel can be lonely. I get up at 4:00 a.m., go to the airport and wait in line, get on the plane, get a coffee, go to my meetings (with a stop at Zoe’s for lunch), and then repeat the process on the way home. Today’s meeting was important, but it ended up being my only meeting so, for a 14+ hour day, I was working/on-the-move.
Trust me, those who wish they could travel more, even if for work, should think about how much fun it is to go to the dentist and realize, that is better!... Anyway, I digress.
The photo today was taken at the Austin Airport and is an artistic display on the way to/from the rental car facility. Even though it looks like a bunch of blocks, it speaks to me about life (like nearly everything I look at these days!!).
To me, it says that life is a series of stepping blocks and we don’t get there overnight. Some of the steps are bigger than others. Some are higher and harder to climb. Some are more pleasant than others. But, when you put them all together in sequence, you can look back and see how we became who we are today. And, potentially, who we could become tomorrow.
One other thing stands out about those blocks to me and that is that no man is an island. We’re all a piece of life’s puzzle and can’t survive without the others. Sure, some puzzle pieces are jacked or missing, but overall, they come together to form us all into who we are.
For a number of reasons, throughout my life, I’ve been terribly independent. I really can’t say why other than I never have wanted for anyone to have to be put out by having to help me. I just felt I needed to carry my own burdens and not bother anyone with them.
I’ve learned, over time with the Mrs., that it’s not always healthy or good to try and carry your burdens by yourself. Especially, when you have a loving wife who is there to help you walk through them. It’s been a hard lesson, but one I’m glad I’ve learned.
Today, if that’s you, the person like me who would rather carry your burdens yourself or get by without anyone’s help, I want to encourage you to take a chance every so often to let another person into your circle who can help.
I know, it may make you feel guilty and like you owe them in return, but I guarantee that, by opening that door for someone to help you, allowing for some vulnerability, you will find life will become better. And, perhaps, you can do the same for someone else in return too.
Wishing you a blessed weekend friend!!