Thursday, December 04, 2008

An Emancipated Mole

I am reading The Wind in the Willows by Alexander Grahame right now (the one illustrated by Ernest Shepherd...wonderful!). It's one of those books that kept popping into my head repeatedly, so I finally gave in and began reading it. This morning I read about Mole's adventure as he, overcome with reckless joy at the end of a wonderful adventurous picnic with Rat, grabs the oars and attempts to, in his overzealousness and newfound freedom, to direct the boat. The result is a splash in the river, a very wet and chagrined Mole, and a forgiving and reassuring Rat.

It occurs to me that the path to emanicipation--whether that is the freeing of our higher selves, the freeing of our personalities, freedom from debt, lack, or illness, or freedom from any kind of limiting image of ourselves--is rarely linear, step by step, safe. As I push toward my own emancipation, I waver from unsure and hesitant to bold and overreaching. My progress may be hard to see on any one day. I may wind up in the river more than once. And yet, over time, a newer truer freer self, a revealed wisdom, begins to appear. I need to remember that whether I'm sopping wet and humiliated or floating on air, buoyed by the hope and joy of new-found freedom.