Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Finding and Preserving Story Medicine

Vision Quest by Paul Taylor
Vision Quest by Paul Taylor
When I started in government, every day I wrote down what I learned.  Now, I have this big binder of things and I return to it sometimes to remember where I came from and wanted to go.  But some of the other things part of me now and I wonder if it is time to let this work go and bring the pertinent stories forward with me.  Before doing that I am reading the binder through one more time and I thought I would share some of the stories here.

My very first entry was something we saw the day before I started in government and it seemed symbolic for that moment.  We had just gotten into Ottawa and everything was new and we were poor.  One evening wandering through the market area we stopped to observe a street performer.  Things were not going his way, he was juggling and he kept dropping things.  It was uncomfortable to watch, but he kept trying so we stayed.  Finally he looked up at us and said that it was time to quit.  He gathered up his things with dignity and left.

This story stays with me as is an ongoing question in my life.  How do you balance the need to sometimes keep pushing when something is hard and how to know when it is time to pack up or find another way or just let go?  How do you know when it is time to turn away?

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