Stumbling Delicately Through Life

Posted on by Jenny Filush

As the world moves swiftly around us, we rarely take the time to stop and think about how our actions may influence others.

We bounce from project to project, rush from one red light to the next, never once glancing behind at all that we have passed or even left behind. When did life become so hurried? When did we become so focused on achieving greatness that we lost sight of all the real things that matter?

Some of the most inspiring quotes I have come across lately are the ones that talk about not focusing on making mistakes. Mistakes are part of human nature and I am of the opinion that these missteps, these “take backs or do-over’s”, simply mold and fashion us into the shape we were meant to become. 

Stumbling through life with our eyes wide open- taking a long hard glance at where we have been and where we want to be, is part of the forward movement. If we are fearful of losing, of not being perfect, of falling apart in the face of adversity, well, then we are probably meant to maintain some level of mediocrity.

Life becomes stagnant when we stay still and never make the effort to improve ourselves by venturing into the scariness of the unknown.

However, it should be noted that once we stumble and fall, whether it is a minor scrape or a flat on your face catastrophe, if we would but sit quietly and listen, we might notice that life is still going on around us.

Life simply is and always will be a force of nature that can create chaos or help us to see that we took part in creating that chaos. Sometimes, stumbling and falling is a part of the healing process.

When we take time to reflect on our actions and what caused the effect, we can hear the wise words of wisdom wrap gently around us and pull us tightly to its bosom. Only then, can we evidence change and create a new path of decision making, a new idea of learning.

So why stumble delicately? Why not bull rush head first into every decision, knocking over everything and anything in your path? Because by stumbling delicately, you are allowing yourself time to slow down and appreciate life. The frenetic pace of choice and actions once again becomes manageable as everything eases and now gallops along beside you at the momentum you have established. Time slows and becomes an ally instead of an adversary.

Now, when you place one foot in front of the other, making a cognizant choice to examine the living and breathing animal that is your being, you are in control of the outcome. Remember, mistakes help to shape us, but only if we are open to accepting that these mistakes were made in order to teach us life’s lessons.

If we are closed to this knowledge, if we continue to stumble blindly and maddeningly without care or concern, then we are risking the loss of all that we could have hoped to gain.

From early childhood, we are taught to clean up spills, erase mistakes and start over. We grow up with the expectation that we have to be the best in order to achieve the highest honors. Blessed are we that had the teachers who praised not only our accomplishments and our achievements, but also gently pointed out our mistakes and helped us learn from them. They taught us that failure was a part of life and that pushing through that failure really was a better measure of how we could secure our future.

This strength, this fortitude changed perceptions and established a new way of thinking; one of conquering adversity in spite of others trying to keep us down. By stumbling through life delicately, we can finally take the time to notice that we are strong, that we do have presence and that we do matter.

With life awareness, we can now take notice of the old man in the wheelchair stuck on the side of the road, or the dog who is wandering lost along the highway. With this new awareness, we are more likely to stop and offer assistance because we are now looking both forward and backward, taking the time to be present for others.

We have chosen to become a part of life, even if we don’t always have all the answers, and this is a positive thing. For when we take time for others, and stumble delicately, we can now look at that gentle bruising from our many falls and watch as it changes colors and fades into the beginning of a new healing, a new life that is no longer so delicate.

It is through this process that we become strong; accepting that faults are a reality in this life and if we are open to learning from them instead of avoiding them by stumbling quickly and without abandon, then that is when we realize that we have truly lived.