The topmost layer of paint had begun to fade and underneath the outline of long forgotten words took shape. They had been buried, hidden in an attempt to wipe them away but time, wind, rain, friction, stripped away the covering to expose them again. They weren’t quite readable yet and perhaps never would be but they were there all the same.
Such it is with most things in our lives. Try as we might to hide our pasts, the truth remains just below the surface, beneath the flimsy walls we raise to protect ourselves and those around us from our missteps. Eventually, the walls will chip, wear thin, and splinter, and the memories hidden beneath will be exposed.
Some walls are stronger, some are weaker, and all are prone to the same ravages of time. We are only human after all. We cannot attain perfection.
That doesn’t mean we should wear our past on our sleeves, chips of pride and patches of past sins. We don’t need to revel in the mistakes that have been made. Rather we should embrace the lessons that were learned because of those mistakes and we should look for the same in others. Do not judge those who have fallen. We have all fallen. Applaud those who stand up and learn to place their steps more carefully. Lend a steadying hand to those who try.
Or we can just keep stumbling around, with our fraying layers attempting the impossible…
In all honesty, I have no idea how we got here. This started as a post about the neglected aesthetics of my office. It was a red curb in desperate need of paint and beneath the red I could see the outline of words that had been written on top of a previous coat. Noticing that helped me notice other things here and there that were in need of a fresh coat, a minor patch, some stucco, a complete overhaul…
And then I started typing, and as is so often the case, the words took their own journey.