My students were bickering over who had stars on the Awards Wall. One was proud of her achievements, but disgruntled that there were other students’ on her heels–soon to achieve the same thing she did.
Negativity is not allowed in my English classes. I watched the dynamic for a minute, conjugated a few verbs in my head for good measure, then interrupted with–“Just because someone else has beautiful things in their life, doesn’t make your own any less beautiful.” Not my most poetic moment, but it got the point across. “Preach it, Malvina!” one student hooted.
I thought about it all evening. How often do we do this? How often do I do this? Someone gets a new house, a new car, that key promotion, and we feel that sinking feeling in the pit of our stomachs. They’re doing SO GOOD. I didn’t do anything like that lately. Maybe I’m not as special as I thought I was.
You guys–it’s a such sick cycle. It has us chasing possessions and working too many hours and talking about our friends behind their backs.
And yet so many beautiful things can only exist because there are MANY of them. A field of flowers. Trees in a forest (each one bent its own particular way, not a single one trying to bend like its neighbor). Grains of sand at the beach (this last one is a mind-blower, by the way–have you ever seen those up close? amaze-balls!)
And stars. Lordy, if there’s one thing I love it’s a night sky full of stars. At the farm, far away from the city lights, it’s steal-your-breath fantastic. Each sun up there shining its heart out. Only beautiful because they’re all doing it at the same time.
So you just do you super-trooper. I’ll try to do the best to just do me. Together, we’re gonna light up the night sky.