Sunday Snippet: Vivian Greene on Hardship

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.”

Keeping up with the Joneses is not only difficult; it’s completely and utterly impossible. Especially in the modern age of social media, we look at the lives of our friends, colleagues and casual acquaintances and assume that everything is perfect.

Look! So-and-so is going on another fabulous trip to the Bahamas.
Look! So-and-so is so happy visiting Santa with her daughter.
Look! So-and-so just got a big promotion at work.

The truth of the matter is that we all have our struggles, challenges and difficulties. Behind every photo of an overjoyed baby are countless sleepless nights, temper tantrums, and unfortunate accidents involving a variety of bodily fluids. Believe it or not, the lives of other people really aren’t that different from yours. They can be boring. They be stressful. They can be depressing.

It’s not all sunshine and rainbows all the time, so you really need to stop waiting for the storm to pass, as author and artist Vivian Greene perfectly states above. Something or someone will inevitably rain on your parade. Life is hard and it needs to be. That’s how you grow. That’s how you learn to persevere. That’s how you move forward.

The lesson here is not necessarily to celebrate all of your failures and shortcomings. Rather, the lesson is understanding that you can only focus on that which you can control. Unless your name is Ororo Munroe, you can’t control the weather. It’s going to rain. And sometimes, you’ll have to endure some rather nasty storms.

It can look dark and it can feel gloomy. You can dwell on these circumstances and perceive them as being negative/ Or you can choose to see the rain in a new light. The rain also brings life. The rain is also refreshing and invigorating. The rain is rhythmic and can provide the perfect stage for dancing. So, dance. Dance like no one’s watching. Because now is as good a time as any.

You don’t want to look back at your life years from now and wonder what could have been. You don’t want to look back and only see you moping by the windowsill. You want to look back and have fond memories of dancing, singing and celebrating in the rain with a giant smile on your face.