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Second look: On one foot in front of another

Posted May 19 2010 2:01pm

He wrote to thank me for the post about “meeting a hero.”  He said he needed to hear about the heroism of small things.

He is in a bad space right now.  He told me he had discovered that depression was  not an attitude, or an emotion.  He said it was the place he lived.  He told me he had a good friend who was trying to get him to “cheer up.”  He said it was like telling a fish not to get wet.  He didnt know what to say to his friend.  “I love her dearly.  But she thinks depression is just being very sad….How do you explain?”

For him life was about putting one foot in front of another.  Not much felt good.  Not much felt important.  Sometimes not much felt at all.  “One foot in front of another….” — that was the wisest thing he knew.  He was, I think, a wise man.

Sometimes the greatest wisdom is that there is no great wisdom.  Things simply are.  And persistence and endurance are really triumphs of the spirit.  You only leave the desert by walking through…. and sometimes the walk is long.

I have been in his place.  I have been where life is a tsunami and a finger in the dike seemed so small and ineffectual.  But there is a heroism in small things.  There is a heroism in keeping going.  There is a heroism in putting one foot in front of the other.

Maybe you are a hero and never known it.  Maybe you know someone who needs to know he is a hero.

I hope tomorrow blesses you.  But maybe if you simply put one foot in front of the other you will bless tomorrow.


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