Finding Beauty

Posted on October 22, 2010

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So talking about Comcast customer service will have to wait until next week.

I think the toughest thing about the current employment/economic situation, and the thing that makes all the anger around the world make sense, is that people have no safe place to express themselves. Everyone that we talk to is potentially a hiring manager, or a reference. If we are angry, or scared, or frustrated, we plaster a big smile over it and fake it ’til we make it. All that energy has to go somewhere, and from what I see on the news, it’s going to public demonstrations, strikes, vandalism, and other violent expressions.

I mention that because, in the midst of one of my black days (I have fewer than some people, but I do have them), an old friend did something beautiful. Back in our school days, I was socially inept at best. It didn’t occur to me to think about what it meant that a woman I considered an airhead was in AP US History with me. I once mocked her in that class for not knowing who fought on which side in World War II. Okay, I was a bit of a WWII geek (I was a geek in many ways, but that was one of them) and we were in a college-level class, but I had no business calling her out in front of classmates like that.

The other day we discussed it via Facebook. It turns out that she took that incident as a challenge. She knuckled down, got a degree, and is now a teacher. Social media gave us a chance to apologize for our high school behavior and get on with being friends. In the middle of a black day, I found forgiveness. We weren’t close at all in high school, but somehow that makes yesterday’s exchange of apologies all the more meaningful.

I believe things are getting better. Companies are hiring. Some financial indicators are up. I think that trend will continue. Until you achieve the success that you desire, I hope that you, too, can find beautiful moments in the midst of the struggle.

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Posted in: Self-Reference