While watching the old series “Xena:The Warrior Princess” from the beginning, an exchange between her and her friend Gabrielle at the end of one of the episodes really touched me. For those of you reading, whether or not you have ever watched this old series that started back in 1995 and lasted through to about 2000, I believe, makes no difference. Here is the exchange they had from the best of my memory.
Xena: “You see that lake? See how the surface of the water is calm and still? That used to be me.” *She picks up a big rock and throws it into the lake* “Then THAT happened to me and the ripples were formed, spreading out, disrupting the calm”
Gabrielle: “But if we sit here long enough, eventually the lake will go back to being calm”
Xena: “Yes, but the rock is still underneath the water. The surface may be calm again but the water is forever changed.”
They then walk away and Xena turns back to see the lake has calmed and a smile forms on her face.
That ended the episode but the exchange stuck in my head. Such a great metaphorical way of looking at how a person can deal with hardships and struggles. True, when we deal with a hard time, it’s like the rock that’s thrown into a body of water. The once calm exterior is threatened and ripples occur, spreading out, sometimes infecting more than just ourselves. BUT the lake, just like you, will eventually calm. Hard times will eventually get better, we will move on just like the water does. The rock thrown into the water forever changes it just as hardships we go through forever change us.
Every one of us has gone through something in our lives and for many years afterwards, the pain from it remains deep down inside. Even though the pain will eventually lessen or even cease, it’s always a part of us. It’s always a part of who we are. Who we become depends so much on what we have been through in life and how we dealt with it.
I think I wish to be more like a lake in dealing with the rocks that are thrown my way because while they may forever be changed by them, the lake will conform to them and put on the calm, still exterior without letting you know what just happened to it. Not by pretending or putting on a mask as people can tend to do, but simply by just being what it is…a lake.
Often, I think we not only are forever changed by the rocks, but we let them weigh us down. We refuse to allow ourselves to go back to that peace we had before by denying what we so rightfully deserve. We deserve to keep fighting, we deserve to never give up, we deserve to attack the evil in our lives and tell it that while it may be a part of our lives, it won’t be the CENTER. It won’t be the main focus of who we are and it’s not going to stop us from being happy.
To all those dealing with unimaginable trials and tribulations right now, I’m so sorry for the rocks that life threw at you. No one deserves what some have had to deal with lately. Right now, your world may be in chaos and the ripples from your tragedies may be felt far and wide, but just know that there WILL be a calm after the storm. Life WILL get better and don’t forget to smile at all the little good things here and there. Don’t allow the rocks to stay at the surface of you…push them down and overcome. Your struggles will forever be a testament of your life but they don’t have to be the center point. Be like a lake that has tons of rocks collected at the bottom but has transformed through them all and remained at peace.