“It is not titles that honour men, but men that honour titles.” ~ Machiavelli
I thought of this quote as I was performing the most benal task this morning. I don’t really have a title. But I have a place. I have roles. And I was wondering what kind of honor I have brought to them. As small as they have been. Not a lot. Not very often. And it hasn’t been the mistakes that I have made that brought dishonor, but my heart. I’m glad I have time. I have today.
So, I can’t stay inside. There’s a danger in locking oneself away. And it’s painfully cold outside. Doesn’t do any good to think about fall or spring. Because I’m in the middle of winter. In Ohio. But even in the middle of the bitterness, there is a moment. Of sunlight and frozen flowers. And I want to grab on to whatever life force is attached to it. I think I need to start gathering up moments like these along the way. And looking for more. Maybe I won’t notice the cold so much.
It’s impossible when light shines brightly enough, not to be exposed. Yesterday, I had a conversation where the light was pretty bright. Tired of hiding from it, I stood there. Loosened my stiff neck. Opened my heart. And let the light, well… enlighten. And while it was painful, what the light revealed was bigger than my pain. It was bigger than the whole of me. And I want something bigger than me right now. Surrendering to it was the only thing I could do. Not because I’m great, but because I’m not.
This morning, like so many mornings now, I woke up thinking about my dad. Happy Father’s Day, by the way. I still miss him. Maybe even more than I did months ago, which is strange because I thought it would get easier. This morning I kind of smiled when I thought about how I viewed him as I was growing up. When I was little, I thought he was the greatest man alive. He was tall and strong with a deep rich reading voice. His stride when we walked together was twice my height. When I got older, teenage years, I thought he was great because he knew everything about everything. He was incredibly smart. My brother and sisters and I know way more about the Japanese Maple and other various trees than we will ever be able to use. And as an adult I learned about his character. His high standards and ethics. I learned about the sacrifices he made for his family. The loyalty to his friends. His generosity toward everyone he knew.
Maybe, maybe… I thought he was the greatest man alive because he was. And maybe there’s nothing wrong with a girl thinking that.