Keeping it Balanced

I had purchased a 15 foot aluminum wide body Legend boat with a 20 HP motor. It’s use was intended for small lake fishing. I hadn’t done any serious fishing since a trip several years back in Northern Quebec. So, I was excited to reconvene the adventures. I also added all the necessary safety equipment as required by DMV. Only one piece was missing; an anchor. A trip to Canadian Tire left me empty handed due to an inventory shortage. However to my rescue came my friend Shannon. He was keeping an anchor in his garage for which he no longer had any use and was the right size for my boat. So he let me have it.

I was walking down the steps to the lake at the cottage with anchor in hand, including two paddles and a boat cover in a box. As I walked along the side of the dock towards the boat and mind you, heavily laden, the floating dock shifted. Of course with the anchor in my left hand, the shift caused me to loose my balance and without recourse I quickly fell into the lake, completely clothed. Those watching had a good laugh at my expense and embarrassment.

Later, after drying and a change of clothes, I thought about the experience. I realized how easily it was for me to loose my balance so quickly, even when I thought I had it all under control. Fortunately, my fall was in a lake of warm water. But sometimes, the consequences are not so forgiving.

Through out life, we work hard to keep it all balanced. Work, family, friends, school, chores, errands, exercise, social demands, finances, extra curricular activities and more all chipping at us for our attention and time. But trying to balance it all becomes at times impossible. I admire those who manage to do so, effortlessly.

But more importantly is the challenge to juggle life’s temptations so that we keep our balance and not fall into a lake of regret. How many of us or those we know or heard of, have travelled life’s road so free of error, building confidence along the way, but being led unfortunately to a place of arrogance.  Signs which kept us on the straight and narrow became blurred, and we lost our balance only to be shocked by the consequence.

Sometimes insignificant events like the one I just had, we ignore. But I wonder if they occur to remind me/us of the need to always stay focused, stubbornly focused, so that we don’t trip and fall from other more serious potential calamities.

I brought out the electric wood splitter to help reduce the size of a cord of wood just delivered. The cut wood delivered was larger than the fireplace allowed. As a safety precaution, the wood splitter required two actions to operate. A variable power switch had to be pressed while simultaneously a covered lever had to be engaged to cause the splitter to operate. To make the operation simple, one could kneel, use one hand to press the variable power switch while using the other hand to engage the splitter. But this increased the potential for an accident if the wood were to split irregularly. Realizing the simple approach was also the most dangerous, I decided to use a more complicated and frustrating approach with the help of a broom handle for the variable power switch and my properly covered foot to engage the splitter lever. Several times I saw wood pieces split in an unusual form and if I were kneeling close to them, I would have been injured. Keeping my approach balanced, kept me from harm’s way.

There will be bigger and more serious tests to face. But by learning from the smaller and seemingly less important tests, will help me keep my balance as unexpected attempts are made to strike me down.

We will never have to face more in life than we are capable of handling. All we need to do is be open to learning from our daily experiences, understanding the lesson each is intended to teach, and applying those same principles as life’s tests become more difficult and complicated.

By doing so, we can keep it (“life”) so wonderfully balanced.

Have a great day!



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Next issue will be August 15th, 2014.

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