Monday, July 20, 2015

Slow Trickle

I take a shower every day like most folks. It is usually a pretty dull affair. I wake up, stumble into the bathroom, and climb under the water. A little shampoo, a little lather, a quick rinse and I am done. Day in, down out the process and the pattern are the same. Yet in that rote activity, there was an important lesson for me to learn and to embrace. It only took me a couple of years to figure it out.

Several years ago the hose on my showerhead failed and I had to replace the whole unit. A simple job after a quick trip to the local home improvement store. After about 10 minutes, my shower was back up to peak performance. Yet since that day, I have slowly but surely lost water pressure. The change happened so slowly and so subtly that I never noticed what was going on. What was once a satisfying torrent of cascading water, effectively became a drizzle. At first I could rinse off the suds in just a few moments. In time I found myself having to endlessly run the showerhead wand up and over my body. However, because the changes were so minute from day to day, I never noticed what I had lost. I just accepted the presented situation as normal.

I think that so much of our life is lived just like this. Compromises, distractions, and losses that we face are accepted as normal that we never even fully recognize or witness. One area of our life is good today, and then another day long in the future it is not so good. Yet we miss it. We just accept that things are as they always have been because the erosion has been so slow in coming. We rationalize, we excuse, we become inured to getting less when we should be getting more. We accept the good when we could have the great, or worse yet, we accept the crummy when we could have so much better. If this type of problem were limited to our bathroom fixtures, then it wouldn't amount to that big of a deal. However, when it describes our relationships or our attitudes toward life, then we need to move into action.