A Supporting Role

One of the reasons I have been writing so little these days is that I am currently leading a very small existence. And a smaller existence does not typically lend itself to interesting adventures, misadventures, witty observations or deep philosophical epiphanies.

It has, however, offered a few “A-Ha” moments along the way.

A lot of language gets thrown around about our own personal “journeys” and how important and unique they are. And especially how we must make the MOST of OUR journey and do everything in our power to ensure that OUR journey is the BEST journey it can be. Stop by any newsstand these days, take a peek at the women’s magazines especially and you’ll see what I mean.

But last weekend as I reflected on my scaled-down activities as of late… the week now behind and the one that was in front of me, I got to thinking… maybe my existence isn’t always about MY journey like the world would have me believe. Maybe, at times, I am merely playing a part in another person’s journey. End of story.

The smaller existence I am referring to is that I currently have no “real” job offering me zilch when it comes to my own daily, defined purpose. There is no need to get things dry cleaned these days or to attempt the nitty-gritty navigatation of office politics. Since I am not around the water cooler or the break room, there are very few people to discuss the media circus and lunacy that is the presidential campaign or Snooki’s fitness for motherhood.

Currently my job—which I must mention, is one that I gladly volunteered for—has been to help provide and manage the care of my soon-to-be father-in-law in the wake of his wife’s sudden passing. And let me tell you that for me this is an entirely new experience. I have no children and have worked in an office all of my adult life… providing me ZERO experience in caring for another person.

This new experience includes (but is not necessarily limited to): Making repeated (often maddening and fruitless) phone calls to various outside entities designed to help in situations such as this one. Ensuring that he gets his medicine on time, all day, everyday. Making sure he eats or is offered some healthy food throughout the day. Keeping him company by sitting on the porch making small talk, petting the cats that he loves to feed and laughing about the things the neighbors do.

I know I’ve sort of stated this before, so forgive me if this post feels a bit redundant. I told you I didn’t have a lot to write about these days. But it did occur to me that this “season” in my life is not about me. The world teaches us that we must be the star of our own show — all the time. Well, I am here to tell you that this doesn’t appear to be the case.

Sometimes our name is NOT one that will appear at the top of the playbill. Sometimes there will be little, if any, applause. Sometimes ours is merely the role of supporting character… and the majority of our time will be spent behind the curtain.