Flightless Birds and Confessions

I have a confession to make: I harbor a ridiculously large collection of penguins.

They reside in my Word Document Folder entitled “Blog”. That’s right: a whole battalion of birds that just won’t fly.

This post is going to be short, simple, and honest — something that has been lacking in my previous and attempted posts.

In the past, every post I’ve published has been accompanied by some apology for not posting more often, and a promise to do so more often.

This month, I did make a serious attempt to write three posts, and I had no shortage of ideas. Three very interesting analogies— relating, of course, to The Lord of the Rings— formed in my mind, and I began to run with them. But as I sprinted down the runway and tried to throw those baby birds into the air, they would flap their wings uselessly and do a face-plant on the concrete. I then convinced myself that no matter uninspired I felt, I had to push forward and post something, so I picked up those bruised penguins and tried to launch them into the air anyway… but in vain, of course. Penguins, after all, are flightless birds.

Then, I realized something. When I began this blog last fall, I concluded my first post with the words “So, welcome to the daily journey of leaving bag end.”

The daily journey. Not the “once-every-other-month” journey.

I have developed a problem with trying to launch eagles into the air—posts full of large thoughts, deep analogies and connections, and epic stories. And, seeing that most eagles are endangered species, you know how easy it is to get a hold of one of those. Eagles aren’t something that I find in my daily walk through life. And for this blog to succeed, it must be filled with things that fit into my daily thoughts, feelings, experiences, and lessons.

Truth be told, I don’t walk around in Middle earth. I walk around on this messy, beautiful earth, whose adventures and encounters deserve to be written about. I haven’t been real about the everyday adventures and struggles on which I founded this blog. By writing eagle-sized posts, I was trying to state that I had life together, figured out, stuffed neatly into a little box, and tied with a pretty little bow.

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But life isn’t that simple; my life, and everyone’s lives. It’s a crazy mess, something a little more like this…

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The original point of this blog was not a commentary on the Lord of the Rings. It was a travel log through the everyday adventure of life, inspiring the reader and the writer alike to step outside their doors to take that adventure. Tolkien’s work only serves as a frame, not an end in itself.

Thus, for this little blog to grow at all, I need to write things relatable to my own life. I need to launch little sparrows into the air, not mighty eagles. Sparrows fill Life’s sidewalks and branches, ready to be cupped in your hands and released into the fresh, clear air. Eagles and penguins; not so much.

So, from now on, no more pretending. No more boxes full of life, neatly tied shut with ribbons. That means relating failures, victories and hard-learned lessons with refreshing honesty, and acknowledging the huge importance of the small things in life. I’m going to begin launching more sparrows: my tiny reflections on the immense journey of life, and on the everyday adventures that it contains.

Now, if you don’t mind, I’d better sign off. I have a closetful of penguins to return to the South Pole.

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