I once saw a python in the driver’s seat.
And, no, he wasn’t driving.
The python had wrapped himself around the neck and shoulders of the grizzly looking man who was driving. I was struck by the irony of watching this man, the driver of an extermination truck, play with the python wrapped around his neck as we all sat in traffic that wasn’t moving.
I saw an amazing metaphor in this strange glimpse into some guy’s life. It’s a dangerous thing, this business we call life. At times the python merely sits there, wrapped around your neck and life moves along as it should–no interruptions, no crisis moments, no extremes of either kind. Other times, the python begins to squeeze. Family members die, dreams are lost, friendships dissolved. We find it hard to breathe as the python directs our lives down paths we would rather not take.
But we don’t often have much choice when it comes to the paths our lives will take. We all make our plans, of course, but life has an insidious way of navigating its own twists and turns–just like the python. Before we know it, we are traveling down paths we never mapped out and stopping in areas we’d rather avoid. The python steers our way and survival may depend upon surrender.
Much of my writings are born while traveling the paths I wish I didn’t have to take and making those rest stops I wish I never had to make. I guess that may be true for a lot of writers. Life is painful when the python is constricting. But pain is always lessened when it is shared. And so I share some of the python’s constrictions in my life with you. Perhaps some of your pain will be lessened, knowing that I have felt it too.