Tuesday, June 27, 2006

TODAY'S QUOTE: "It's not what you pay a man, but what he costs you that counts." Will Rogers, 1879-1935, American Humorist and Entertainer

The personal cost of every encounter with our fellow man is worth so much more than any amount of cash that may be involved. Some people bankrupt us on all levels at once; others pick and choose, taking a bit from various spots so we don't become unduly alarmed before they're done. They may simply take as if we're some sort of vending machine and grow angry when all the treats are gone. They may seem to deposit freely while they linger then poof they're only a memory. We may win or lose in ways much too precious to calculate. The possible combinations are limitless and as unique from one another as snowflakes.

There is no way to assess beforehand just what kind of outcome will occur at any given time. The mystery is part of the driving force that moves us toward one another. Our own personal needs figure into it too; pretending otherwise won't make us any less needy. We may hunger for someone to fill what's empty and fix what aches, which signals to the vultures we're an easy meal. Until we learn that nobody else can fix us we continue to make the same poor choices. When brain surgery is needed calling a plumber is asking for a bad outcome. Seeking inside ourselves for the answers is half the battle won, and most of the war guaranteed.

Nowadays with the anonymity of the internet we're often out on a limb long before we even hear the saw cutting into our perch. I was badly burned, but it didn't stop me from believing in my fellow-man. It did not shake my confidence in myself either; all it did was prove that in this one case I paid a staggering price for NOTHING. Hell, that happens to all of us from time-to-time. Once I realized my true worth and altered any self-destructive actions the vultures stopped circling overhead. Once I stopped short changing myself it became impossible for others to do likewise.  

Learning from it before traveling on is the only way to get rid of the bitter taste. Faith has proved me right, often enough to allow me the honor of controlling the final cost of each encounter. I refuse to add to the bill by giving into negatives. Disappointment is only important in the lessons it teaches, so in a twisted way it pays its own price for its brief journey inside my orbit.

I thank God every day for that bitter disillusionment and the price I paid. If I had held onto that dead horse, I would have been in the wrong place to discover what I possess now. God bless the broken road that led me here. Travel swiftly through the bitter times, they hold nothing worth keeping once the lesson is fully learned. A better tomorrow is fairly earned by living through all the less than perfect yesterdays.