Who opened up new possibilities for you? Who pried open a part of yourself you kept bottled up under a tight lid? Who were your “bottle openers”?
Today is the birthday of one of those people in my life.
When I went away to university decades ago now, I was someone who didn’t do unexpected things. I followed all the rules. I was an honour student. I was a farm girl who worked hard and showed up for work early, not just on time. People relied on my to not challenge authority and to colour within the lines. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.)
Then, in my residence I met a free spirit. She had spunk, a strong will and a carefree attitude. Vitality.
My uptight view of life often irritated her. She said to me, more times than I could count, “You have to be more spontaneous.”
On her coattails, I enjoyed many spontaneous escapades. She popped the lid off a sense of adventure I didn’t know I had. Over the years, with a little practice, I have learned to instigate my own spontaneous adventures on occasion, and I thank her as my teacher in that regard every time.
Now that I’m older and decades have passed, I see another side to the story, too. Opposites attract, and while I needed her to pop the lid off my sense of adventure, I think I offered something to her, too. My calm balance settled her from time to time. She helped me to fly, and I helped to ground her.
Some people come into our lives and brush by us without consequence as they pass by. Other people shake us open, and we’re never the same again. I have other bottle openers in my life: my husband, my children, a minister or three, teachers . . ..
Who are your bottle openers?
Happy birthday, Janet. Fly . . .