Liz Garton Scanlon (liz_scanlon) wrote,
Liz Garton Scanlon

Community: To Cheer or to Covet, Redux

It's funny.
Last week after I posted about art and envy, I second guessed myself. 

I thought, nobody's going to relate to this and I will have exposed myself as a singular
and pathetic yearner-for-more.

I thought, maybe I oughta go back to my gratitude posts and stay there.

I thought, maybe I oughta choose a pseudonym.

But then ya'll stopped by. 

And it turns out every last one of us thinks about how we receive news of our own successes and each other's. 
It turns out we all have various spiritual and psychological veins we tap when times are tough.
It turns out that we've all compared ourselves to others, gotten antsy, or rolled our eyes at overnight success.
It turns out there have been an awful lot of "why not me" moments in our humble pasts.

But it turns out that very few of those "why not me" moments translate into "why her (or him)" moments.

It turns out we relish and wallow in and cheer and welcome the success of our compatriots.
It turns out we believe there is space enough for all of our books on the bookshelves.
It turns out we are pretty good at going back into ourselves and our own work with compassion and determination.
It turns out we're mostly patient (on the days we're not impatient) and mostly industrious and dedicated (on the days we're not flailing about) and mostly open to inspiration -- in the world and from each other.

I am comforted, no end, by this affirmation of community.
My desk is not an isolated island. Neither is yours.
There are bridges and boats and messages in bottles between us.

I am here, working, but I don't mind a little distraction now and then.
So, when you get a chance, send good news...
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