Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Perfect Agate: A Life Lesson

Sometimes, life sees fit to throw uncertainties your way.  

These uncertainties can cause you to be unable to follow through with something at a set time.

In my case, that uncertainty was weather that caused the satellite here to lose signal, thereby causing a lack of internet at the house.  This caused a very interesting cascade of events ranging from lost post writings to wolf poop on the bottom of my favorite pair of Teva sandals.

Don't ask. There are some things that don't need explaining.

The point is that eventually I gave up, grabbed my daughter, and headed off to the beach.  While there, I laid myself down on my stomach and stared at the rocks that rolled in with each wave.

And I found agates.  Some nice, some not so much so.

For those of you that don't know what they are, agates are brightly colored pieces of chalcedony that are known for their beautiful and complex banding.

Pretty rocks with lines

I know that doesn't seem too exciting, but there are many people in "The Northland", as they call it, which will spend hours combing the rocky beaches of lake Superior looking for the perfect agate.  When a high quality, well lined agate is discovered, there is deep personal pride and a sense that all is right in the world.

So I went to the beach to find the perfect agate.

I ended up with many agates, and they weighed my pockets down.

I then proceeded to empty my pockets again, all along the same area of the beach
                                                ...and walk home without them.

Even The Big One.  (It's not just fishermen that have The Big One.)

Yes, that sounds crazy.  Those of you that have ever gone agate hunting are no doubt screaming at me through your monitor.  What kind of a crazy person leaves her treasure behind?!  I've just been stricken from the Great Agate Hunter Wall of Fame.

What made me do it?

Nature taught me a life lesson. 

Every time I found a beautiful new agate I was filled with absolute joy.  A smile would light up my face.  My heartbeat raised.  Colors all got just a little brighter, and the cool breeze caressed my cheeks tenderly as it whispered that everything was perfect in the world.  At least in that one special moment.

That one special moment...

That was what made me do this.  That tiny moment of discovery and the few short moments after it were what caused me to search for those small geological treasures.  Sure, there were a few moments after the initial discovery that brought happiness.  Showing off the day's find always brings great feelings of joy, and there are a few more special moments that can be found.

But there is nothing like that initial discovery. All other moments with that pretty little lined rock pale in comparison to the first.

So I scattered them all along the beach for someone else to find.

They gave me my joy, and it was good.  But now I had the ability to share that joy with someone else in the future: Some random stranger who may need that joy as much as I did when I arrived on the beach to begin my hunt.

The only thing better than experiencing pure and innocent joy is sharing that same bliss with others.

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