A professor of mine once said that, “the older I get, the more I become like I really am.” He said this during a lecture on personal identity, but (as an aside) the same logic applies to a community.
The most accessible interpretation of those words is that we get more comfortable with who we are as we mature, more willing to express our honest feelings, better equipped to embrace our idiosyncrasies. To one extent or another, we reconcile with ourselves and find a place in the world.
Another extrapolation from that sentiment is that, like a novel or movie, the most authentic version of our self can only be known when it is complete…when it is finished. That anything less constitutes an incomplete narrative or picture of events. In short, we are most like who we are the second before we shuffle off our mortal coil.
I am posting this in the morning, so are you enjoying your Wheaties yet?
Are we all works-in-progress? If so, are we the artist or the canvas?
I know many of my dear readers are probably of a certain age and reflect on such questions. We stand mid-life, equidistant from the end of our college days and the promise of our retirement years…the former recedes as time pushes us closer to the latter. We wonder about what we have accomplished, and what we might yet create.
“We are what we are, as well as the process of what we are becoming.” Same professor, same class period. He was on fire that day. I can see him standing there now, arms flailing as he stabbed the blackboard furiously with his chalk. I thought he was On To Something. Perhaps he wasn’t…maybe he was just running the short con in front of some naïve college freshmen but in the almost 25 years since that lecture, I still think about the meaning of what he said. So I suspect he was imparting hard-earned Knowledge. That class, that lesson, was tuition well spent.
What will your novel be? What words will be written next?
Stay tuned, as more will follow.