Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The World According to Mister Rogers: Reflections

When I knew I wasn't going to finish Bone Wars, I wanted a replacement Pittsburgh-related book for August. The World According to Mister Rogers was on my suggested reading list, so I requested and picked up a copy from the library last week. [Fun Allison-fact: It wasn't until I was in my very late teens that I realized that Mister Rogers was a program based in Pittsburgh. It didn't click until I was interning at WQED in college. Clearly, I used to be a lot less Pittsburgh-obsessed...)

It was certainly a quick little read, as it is quotes and excerpts from the man himself. With a cat on my lap and the men's finals in diving on the TV (oh, how I will miss my nightly Olympics binges), I picked out five of my favorites to share. These seem so relevant to my life now. I think it might be interesting to pick this up in another ten years to see which are relevant to me then.

Solitude is different from loneliness, and it doesn't have to be a lonely kind of thing.
I've always been a bit of a loner. I try not to be scared to do things on my own, because knowing I can rely on myself has always been very important to me. I love being around my friends, but sometimes it's really comforting to spend a solid few hours alone. 

Often when you think you're at the end of something, you're at the beginning of something else. I've felt that many times. My hope for all of us is that "the miles we go before we sleep" will be filled with all the feelings that come from deep caring--delight, sadness, joy, wisdom--and that in all the endings of our life, we will be able to see the new beginnings.
Since moving back to Pittsburgh in July 2010, my life seemed to be filling up with a series of endings. The ending of my mom's life is undoubtedly the most significant, but peppered in there were the endings of big things like relationships and friendships, and of little things like hobbies or projects. I spent a lot of time bogged down by the endings that I wasn't fully appreciating all of the beginnings. Somewhere in the midst of the past two years I have started and grown with this blog, become a person in love with biking, and met so many new and wonderful friends in Pittsburgh. From now on, I'm going to obsess less over endings and focus more on the new beginnings that inevitably spring from them.

It always helps to have people we love beside us when we have to do difficult things in life.
If I have learned anything in the past two years, it's that I have the best friends in the world.

How great it is when we come to know that times of disappointment can be followed by times of fulfillment; that sorrow can be followed by joy; that guilt over falling short of our ideals can be replaced by pride in doing all that we can; and that anger can be channeled into creative achievements...and into dreams that we can make come true!
Similar to recognizing new beginnings, here is something that I can also subscribe to. Life is always going to be a series of ups and downs. Sometimes you're on a rollercoaster with just a few little dips, but maybe you're on the Phantom's Revenge in life, where the lows feel pretty terrible. When everything seemed to be going wrong in the second half of 2011, I felt like I would never break out of everything that was disappointing, sorrowful, guilt-inducing, and angering. With the first half of 2012 behind me, I can say for certain that those negative things are becoming more and more a part of my past, and that fulfillment, joy, pride, and creative achievements are becoming my new normal.

I find out more and more every day how important it is for people to share their memories.
Truth! Last Tuesday night I joined my dad and three of his college buddies for dinner at Wingharts. A few beers in, and they were regaling me with stories of their Beta Theta Pi days. Their stories of buggy-racing victories, frat-house antics, and having been to most every Steelers home game since they were in their twenties was absolutely amazing entertainment.  

1 comment:

  1. This makes me want to dust off my copy. Such an observant and wise man.