Your second life starts when the world cracks you open, by Justine Musk
Adam Rifkin stashed this in Be yourself.
Found via Emilia Lahti:
There’s a quote by Tom Hiddleston: “We all have two lives. The second life starts when we realize that we only have one.”
Justine Musk writes:
Your second life starts when the world cracks you open — usually against your will.
You learned a certain story about who you think you are and where you think you’re going. Maybe you weren’t fully conscious of what it was – we rarely are – but this story communicated itself to others through not just what you said (and didn’t say) but how you carried yourself and whom you loved (and hated) and what you wore, and what you moved toward (and crossed the street to avoid) and what you did (and didn’t do) when up against a wall.
Others reflected that story back to you, and because they were older and seemed to speak from the bones of authority, you absorbed that story more deeply into yourself, and communicated it more vividly, and others reflected it back to you…
But story truth is trickster truth. It shows itself as one thing and reveals itself as something else.
Something that catches you – not to mention everybody else – by surprise.
If the truth of a story could be captured in words, it wouldn’t need to be a story in the first place.
Andrea Kuszewski shared this story on Emilia Lahti's post:
When I was an undergrad at UWM, I was doing research for Dr Fazio, who was dying of cancer (but did not tell his students). He didn't want to 'ruin our last times together'.
I had just gotten engaged, and he pulled me aside one day after my shift in the lab was done, and he said: "You know, I wish I could give you some better advice as you enter the next phase of your life, but the thing is this: I've been married twice, and on this earth for a long time, and we still don't know what the fuck we are doing. Just remember that."
He died about a month later, while we were on Christmas break. He was getting up there in years, but it is still sad that I didn't know enough to thank him for his guidance over the years.
In any case, he was right. We never really know what the fuck we are doing. We risk, and we improvise, and we try not to fuck up too badly. And if we do, we get up and try again.
I like her version of Fall Down Seven Times, Get Up Eight.