Thursday, March 19, 2015

The ever persistent earthworm

Today is a rainy day here in Kansas. Its been raining on and off for the past couple of days... good long soaking spring days. I know that many tire quickly from the rain; it is not often enjoyable to go on long walks in the park while its raining, I don't know of many people that would choose to sit on a patio to eat dinner in the rain. Today, the rain showed me something - the definition of persistance.

According to the interwebs, persistence is a noun and means "
firm or obstinate continuance in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition".


Today I was walking along the sidewalk and glanced down to find an earthworm slowly climbing out of the wet ground onto the concrete. It got me thinking. How long had he been moving, inching his way to get to the surface? Did he start the moment the ground around him became damp? Did he have to struggle through layers and layers of dry dirt, damp dirt and then the thickest of all mud? Why did he do this? To survivie... in order for him to survive he traveled a long, hard journey.  It gave me a flashback: In the flood of 1993 I remember going out with my family to look at the damage the flood was doing to areas around our home. The river had overrun its banks and had taken a new path right over a main road between our small town and the next. As we walked up to where this new path of water was raging we noticed hundreds of earthworms, all at the edge of the water, slowly inching away from the torrential current of the river. I had never seen anything like it before or since.


Those earthworms could be the picture child of the word persistence. Right next to the word in the Webster dictionary. I'm serious. Think about how hard they work, how many obstacles they have overcome in order to live another day. I don't believe that they do it to impress other earthworms, they do it, because its what has to be done.


Over the past year I've learned that persistence is a trait that I have become to admire and strive to have. Doing something with purpose, no matter what difficulty or obstacle you face, because its what you feel is right, its what you feel has to be done. Its not to win a popularity contest, or to win over that person you are trying to impress. Its being authentic with yourself and others, working towards a goal with purpose.


Slowly I'm inching and edging my way there... I really think I'm only in the part of the dirt that is just damp, I've got some harder dirt to move and I'm sure that I'll get stuck more than a couple of times in the mud, but it will be worth it. On that day that persistence is part of my personality traits I'll be able to smile in the sun. Sure I'll be dirty and muddy and may be laying on the ground, but I will also be proud and triumphant and able to breathe!


I guess what I'm saying is that no matter how hard life is to get through some days, being persistant and working through the mud is far better than staying put and suffocating.


When the world starts raining on your dirt pile, be the ever persistant earthworm.


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