Tuesday, April 22, 2008

vicissitudes

Vicissitudes. That was the original title of this blog. The unplanned happenings of life. There are times when I think I should change it back. If there's one thing in life I've learned it is that when things don't go as planned there can be positive results. For example: When my tiller broke down, instead of spending the money to repair it, I just took it as a sign that maybe I've reached the time in my life when I should scale back my gardening and make room on my schedule for other things. There have been times in my life when I've had to swim against the tide, but now I prefer to drift like a feather in the wind. Life is more interesting when you can take what life sends your way and make something good of it. I guess another way of putting it is playing the hand you've been dealt.

Now, some of my readers my think that's a negative way of looking at things. You may think I'm taking the path of least resistance. But consider this: Many people make long range plans then find something else along the way. You may decide on a certain major in college and then as you learn and are exposed to new ideas find your passion in another field. I wonder how many have worked at careers and struggled to the top only to find that success has left them empty and unfulfilled. And, let's not forget about those vicissitudes. You know what Robert Burns said about "The best laid plans of mice and men..." Sometimes we're blindsided by sickness, loss of work or affection but not all of life's surprises are bad. You may win the lottery (although the odds are overwhelmingly against it), find a new job, or discover an opportunity that will radically change your life.

That's the way I look at things. I believe we were meant to enjoy life on this planet. We have to sort things out and find out what is important and satisfying. Helen Keller said "Life is a great adventure or it is nothing." It's those vicissitudes that bring adventure to our paths.

5 comments:

Morgan Wolf said...

I'm half-blinded by tears after reading your post, Wally. Though I haven't said much about things lately, I have been trying to win with a bad hand that was dealt to me over a year ago. But like most fools, I keep hanging on, hoping things will get better. But of course things are not going to get better. God or the Universe is giving me a huge kick, which is the only way to dislodge me from the current situation. Today, I experienced a vicissitude (unplanned happening) that really threw me. It's going to take me a while to figure out how to make it work for me, like you did with your broken tiller, but I have to believe that I will figure it out.
Thank you for sharing your wisdom.

Morgan

wally said...

Morgan: I know you've been through a rough year. I'm saddened that things are getting worse. If there is anything I can do for you contact me through the email address found in my blogger profile.

Envoy-ette said...

You are right Wally. When I try to MAKE something go one way, I always regret it as it never turns out how I hoped. If I just let Fate/God steer my life, I'm usually pleasantly surprised. But I do moan a little just before I figured out it was a better position to be in.

Lorna said...

I DO like the idea of you as a feather floating in the wind. I'm going to adopt it.

ml said...

I agree that we should take what life sends and make the mast of it. It's a discipline that makes life interesting, because it acknowledges our limitations. We don't know enough to go against circumstance. And yes, it certainly seems that life is for enjoying. Those of us who are lucky enough to have our basic needs filled: food, shelter, and freedom, should try to maximize happiness - which is not easy. As I said earlier, it's a challenge for which we need discipline.