Society loves boxes. Large, small, blue or yellow – every item must fit in its designated container. It’s an efficient method for organizing inanimate objects quickly. Hundreds of books line the shelves in our local bookstore. Each claim to have the best solution for stuffing items in the various boxes.
People, however, are not inanimate objects. We are individuals with multiple facets to our personalities. Society’s cold logic can be lazy and sometimes cruel. We put individuals in boxes because it makes our judgment of them much easier. Sadder still, we as individuals begin to believe we are stuck inside the box society has assigned us.
Big Personalities Can’t Be Trapped in A Box
My Aunt Della was one of the first women to help me understand big personalities cannot be locked in a single box. Several years ago, my sister and I were spending a summer in Anchorage, Alaska. Before the days of cellphones and the internet, a phone call from the lower forty-eight was the best communication you could manage. Our family asked us to visit our seventy-six-year-old aunt who’d just moved to a condo in the city. Alaska was a challenging place to live back then, especially for an elderly woman. Many thought she was crazy to pack up and move there on her own. We had placed her in the “Age Box.”
I come from a long line of strong women. My grandmother, Agnes, spent her youth in an untamed area of the West. She could break horses and strip down a rifle double quick. Aunt Della was a true daughter of Agnes. Despite her age, she’d purchased a cozy multi-level condo in a city she was determined to explore. The condo had steep stairs enclosed by high walls. I took one look and knew they were a death trap.
Aunt Della, as if sensing what I was thinking, ran up and down the staircase at a surprising pace for anyone over forty. She grinned at my sister and me.
“Seventy-Six Years Old and I can still climb stairs,” She said with a laugh.
We later discovered her daily exercise included a brisk walk to and from her local pub. Aunt Della had chosen to live her remaining life full of fun and friends. She refused to be stuffed in Society’s “Age” or “Widow” boxes.
What about you? Are you living life according to someone else’s category?
“We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.” Buddha
Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well.