Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Ostrich and the Phoenix went to sea...

Like the Phoenix, everyone has repeated "burning days," and repeated new birth from ashes. The best lesson learned is that life is messy, exhilarating, painful, sweet, frustrating, frightening, amazing - and just as it should be. Too often, people try to avoid the burning days that come with being human, and the more they try to avoid, the slower and more tortuous the burn when it finally comes. Like deferred maintenance in buildings and cars. Or not paying down debt when we have the chance. Avoiding pain is nothing more than a lost opportunity.

We are meant to grow and stretch and push boundaries. We are meant to make mistakes, learn, and try to do better next time. The Ostrich, on the other hand, (and we've all known head-in-the-sanders), tries to deny human nature, afraid of the burn, unable to comprehend the joy of the new life on the other side. A true Phoenix chooses the burn, walks into the fire with her head held high, ready to be cleansed of mistakes and impurities, and walks out a new woman, forged with balance and strength and wisdom, ready to begin her next cycle with a firm step and an accomplished sparkle in her eyes.

The New York State Legislature is about to embark on some rough seas of serious decision-making regarding the State's $3.1 billion budget gap. The Governor has been clear - this time is going to be even more painful than we can possible imagine.  Cuts will be made, and each cut dollar will impact someone...many someones. It takes a Phoenix - someone who has known pain, has made tough decisions for better or worse, who understands consequences and has been there personally - it takes that cleansed-through-fire person's point of view in order to chart the State's pea-green boat toward thoughtful solutions and safe harbors.

Something to think about.

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