At no other time has this car mirror concept made more sense to me than in this moment between the passing of one year and impending arrival of another. In spite of the excitement that the thought of a clean slate holds, it’s impossible not to also be mindful of the experiences that have collectively contributed to moving me toward this desire for a fresh start — the ones that both good and bad have, if nothing else, brought me one step closer to better understanding your experiences and lives.
“New” will be spoken, promised, hoped for and sought after a lot in the coming days, but this silly rabbit — for better or for worse — is going to strive for authenticity instead, thanks to the words and wisdom of Margery Williams and a couple of broken-in toys:
From The Velveteen Rabbit…
“What is REAL?” asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”
“Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”
“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit.
“Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real, you don’t mind being hurt.”
“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up?” he asked, “or bit by bit?”
“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in your joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
Objects in mirror are closer than they appear, but so is the road before us. Here’s to letting 2010 continue the process of loving me until I’m real and shabby. I don’t want to forget 2009. I want to remember and be better for it. Happy New Year, folks!