Monday, August 27, 2007

On snake skin and living big

The signs of encroaching autumn have sent me into a bit of an activity frenzy, anxious to get out to see and do EVERYTHING before the weather (and more specifically, the weather-covered road) confines me to a smaller territory. I am restless. Unsettled. Twitchy. And it dawns on me that I must be in "snake skin mode" again.

You know what I mean. I feel the way I imagine a snake must feel as it prepares to shed its skin. The present skin is tight. Uncomfortable. Itchy. Irritating. And to make matters worse, even vision is compromised. I can't see where I'm going.

I am flat out cranky.

But it has happened often enough that I know the discomfort is just prelude to a newer, bigger, more flexible skin. I'm restless because I'm stretching and I'm outgrowing the present skin, and this can only be a good thing. It means I'm getting bigger. And I like to live big.

I think I probably need to clarify some personal semantics here, because for me there is a difference between living big and living large. To me "living large" is a condition: it implies a certain excess and a quest for things. But "living big" I think of as an attitude... of openness and expansiveness and curiosity. Living big implies a quest for experience and understanding.

So I like to live big. And if I've got to shed a little skin to get there, well... just don't poke a stick at me while I'm doing so.

"There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living. " - Nelson Mandela

"The larger the island of knowledge, the longer the shoreline of wonder." - Ralph W. Sockman


  1. Bravo at tackling the brave process of growing out of your skin. It's worth the discomfort to get out of that old worn-out one and into a good shiny new one. Keep up the good work!

  2. Great post, Sherrie. I read this at just the right time. Post-Labor Day, post-visit to family, and on a cold, rainy day. You've inspired me to shed my skin.