Tuesday, September 30, 2003


A friend wrote me about fairness: "Fair doesn't allow for grace. Fair doesn't allow for gifts or hope or serendipity." When I was growing up my family (when things were going smoothly) put too much emphasis on fairness. If there is one piece of cake left the older kid (me) cuts it in half and the younger child gets to choose which piece she wants. Everything was a zero sum game. I've tried to learn to believe in abundance instead.

It occurred to me that it is significant that my mother speaks of the hard things that have happened to her as tragedies. Tragedies don't get better. And the classical theory of tragedy says that the bad thing that happens is the result of the hero's tragic flaw, so in some sense it is the hero's fault.

I'm trying to learn that it is possible to accept that something bad happened and grieve it and go on instead of trying to find someone to blame. All radical new ideas for me, particularly when applied to my childhood.

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