Thursday, February 10, 2011

Perspective is the new black

So friends, what a week it's been!

Never have I ran a marathon, but in the last few days I feel a sense of exhaustion coupled with immense accomplishment, as if I'd successfully completed one. That being said, I've definitely hit moments along this "marathon" route similar to an actual runner -- where I've felt bursts of adrenaline, suffered crippling cramps, and had what feels like wayyyy too much time to think as I neared the finish line.

In just over 26 miles I believe one sees not only their surroundings change, but their perspective of their own situation grows a bit clearer. And, if you ask me, that prize beats a medal any day!

So, my marathon began ...

I returned to continue my Grand Jury service this week, which has turned out to be an experience I'll never forget. In the course of these 10 days of service, I've had the opportunity to see a cross-section of my community in the form of 23 randomly selected individuals -- who all turned out to be "cool kids" at their respective proverbial "lunch tables". I thought to myself -- I could really hang out with any one of these folks, even though our everyday lives would probably never present us the opportunity to meet and get to know one another as we have through our collective civic duty.

Anyhoo, life would have it that on break from learning the most I ever have about the judicial system and law enforcement I'd be the victim of a random crime. My wallet was stolen during a quick and jovial lunch with one of my new jury buddies. Go figure?!

Not the easiest afternoon -- in sum, I encountered sympathy, anxiety, exhaustion, joy, and (greatest of all) perspective in the course of the few hours following the "perp taking possession of my property" (as you can see my exposure to law enforcement through jury duty has given me license to use cool cop lingo, lol).

From filing a police report, to spending hours on the phone with my bank, I was forced to (like our metaphorical marathon runner) look at my surroundings and my personal situation with a critical eye. After all was said and done I forced a smile, but the marathon continued in my head.

It wasn't until I received a call later that evening from the grandmother of a very close friend, informing me that they'd had a death in the family, that I saw the finish line on the horizon. My heart grew heavy as my spirit became lighter. There I was mourning the "loss" of my personal effects, while someone I loved mourned much more.

At that moment, I wasn't slowing my stride as a smile of victory stretched across my face and a ribbon broke across my chest. Instead, I was reveling. Reveling in the joy and value of perspective.

Even in times of loss, there is the chance to find peace and joy. Abandoning my moment of pity for my material loss provided me the opportunity to avail myself to those close to me in their time of need. And though the circumstances were not cause for celebration, I was able to smile in appreciation of the blessing within the lesson :-)

In the days since, I've started each morning gratefully drinking this experience. Have you had your perspective today? 

Thanks for reading! God bless.



  1. MmmmmmHMM! That is so true, sis! I'm sad to hear your wallet was stolen, but glad you got this nugget...keep 'em comin'! :-)

  2. I think with age, I am blessed with further understanding the value of perspective. :) Thanks for this post, Dre.

  3. Dre, I found your article on beautylish,which bought me to stumble upon your humble corner of the world wide web.This morning, my roommate and I went for a walk thoughout downtown Atlanta and before reaching a mile I attempted to find myself complaining. I didn't quite understand the reasons but I kept going despite my aggravation. Eventually, I made it to a corner of homeless people sleeping on the street as if it was their home. Today, my perspective was "homlessness is their life today" and yet I complained about taking a walk with a best that would eventually lead me to a nice warm and comfortable apartment with security . I have realized never to take your life too seriously and always remember to "Smell The Sunflowers".

    Stop by sometimes.