The Story Goes On

On Sunday mornings, as Mom was readying the gaggle of us for Church, there was on occasion a discordance. If we were ahead of schedule (rarely for the nine of us in the Francis Family) and hair was disheveled or shirts untucked, she would admonish us to "look presentable for Mass." If we were running late (which was normal even if it was the last Church service), Mom would say "Let's go! God doesn't mind how you look."

Years later I know that there are very few absolutes in life, that things change and people do, too. Sometimes we say things for certain times and then adapt them for others. And I'm okay with that. As a life coach, I observe incongruities and inconsistencies as part of the process of naming "our stuff" in order to point us toward places for growth. Everyone has at least one truly deep story that has defined them (positively or not) and when life presents a new narrative, the possibilities can be transformative!

Think of Moses at the bush, Saul on Damascus road, Nelson Mandela in prison.

I said above that there are few absolutes. One of these is that you are not finished with your story yet. I have an amazing aunt who is ninety-two and very much "alive 'n well"... just the other night she was smiling, laughing and appreciating that 25 of us in the family just Zoomed with her. Or there's Sal who--at the same age of ninety-two--published his fourth book.... oh, and by the way, he also narrated it for Audible.

This is not to say necessarily that you have to be productive or technologically savvy. But during these crazy times isn't it nicer to be surprised by life rather than focusing on what or who is disappointing? Gore Vidal once wrote, "Since no one can ever know for certain whether or not his own view of life is the correct one, it is absolutely impossible for him to know if someone else's is the wrong one."

My Mom had it correct both ways: "Be presentable" and "God doesn't mind how you look."