Recently I read a discourse between some children discussing parents. One stated that her parents don’t want her to change. Perhaps they were trying to avoid losing their rough and tumble mud loving tomboy. The next thought her ignorant parents were incapable of accepting any but preconceived notions about her. Another wondered if all parents were the same, or (implied) that we have the same parents. In this case they did.
These kids are full of baloney! All parents want their kids to change, but as I once heard, a leopard doesn’t change his stripes.
Observing the birth of my children, I realized that each came into this existence exhibiting all the traits that define them as persons. Different from one another, they remain to this day, each the same person they were at birth. Nothing they or I have ever done could make them another person. We are all free to make choices, but our first choice was the persona we would embody. To change this would violate the rules of the game and this reality could no longer exist.
I can assure you that the above referenced parents were trying to instill a lesson learned in their own lives. That lesson is “To thine own self be true”. To succumb to fantasies, denial and peer pressure can only lead to tragedy.
An important influence in my life was the 1960 cartoon Tooter Turtle. Every week Tooter would call upon Mr. Wizard to grant him a new life as a character he romanticized about. Every week Tooter got more than he bargained for.
Tooter would call out “Mr. Wizard, get me out of here!”
Mr. Wizard would say, “Drizzle, drazzle, druzzle, drone, time for this one to come home.”
Tooter would spin back to Mr. Wizard and his old reality. Mr. Wizard would tell Tooter, “Be just vhat you is, not vhat you is not. Folks vhat do zis are ze happiest lot.”
Nearly a half century later, oft times I still call out mentally or sometimes vocally, “Mr. Wizard, get me out of here.”
This morning I told this little tale. There once was a boy, dissatisfied with his prospects in life, that admired the life of a hoodlum. He began to dress and act like a hoodlum. Soon he had the criminal record, fine cars, fast women, reputation and life of a full-fledged gangster. Even he was convinced that this was who he was. Still dissatisfied, one day the boy within came face to face with his true desire. He met a nice girl, the girl of his dreams. She was his soul mate in the truest sense. Alas, they could not share this existence since he was not fit for a decent girl. His denial of self, lead as always to tragedy.
Much the same, as Tooter and the boy, occurs when people, full of desire and fantasies, seek a mate. They visualize commonalities where none exist. They fantasize a life based upon a fantasy of shared dreams. They will become the person the other desires. They will change the other into what they desire. The tragedy occurs when their lives disintegrate into this tapestry of lies.
As Sheriff Taylor once said, “Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.”
Wow! Life sucks! Is it any wonder that parents can’t over emphasize the importance of being true to oneself? Remember to always follow the path with a heart. Now, Mr. Wizard, get me out of here!