Monday, September 15, 2008

The Brick Wall

The Brick Wall

Pacing, back and forth,
Back and forth like a caged animal.
The floor is hard and dirty
My hands and feet are covered in filth
But I continue to pace
Hoping for change.

The brick wall shrinks not,
but seems to grow taller.
I want on the other side
But I am told I must wait.
So I wait, and wait some more.

Will the brick wall grow a door,
Or must I build a ladder to climb.
I have tried pushing
And scraping
And climbing with my bare hands
But the brick wall holds me
I will wait it out
But for how long will I be a caged animal?

(I don't usually write poetry, but I felt inspired by my friend Andrew who is a poet. You can check out his blog in the side bar. So this is my attempt at writing poetry. Tell me what you think. Kyle thinks that I should take out "the brick wall shrinks not" and say "The brick wall doesn't shrink." Your thoughts, criticisms, and comments are welcome and wanted. Thank you.)

I recently watched Randy Pausch speak in the “Last Lecture” series given at Carnegie Melon. The purpose of this series is to allow professors to give a lecture over anything they want, as if it were their last lecture. For Randy Pausch, however, it was his last. Diagnosed with a terminal cancer, the lecture’s title took on new meaning. His speech, however was not about cancer or about overcoming it, but about achieving his childhood dreams. One of the things that struck me was what he called “brick walls.” Brick walls are his metaphor for barriers that get in the way of your goals and dreams. But, he said, they are there for a reason. They are there to keep those who don’t want it badly enough out. As most of you know, we have run into our own brick wall. A brick wall that has an indention from the multiple times we have banged our heads against it. I would like to attach another purpose to Mr. Pausch brick wall, in that it makes the achievement all the more sweet when your blood and sweat has been spent. So many things have come easily to us in the past. Maybe, the purpose of our brick wall was to throw us back into reality. Life isn’t always easy, it is a struggle, but the more we struggle, the more reward we feel when we reach that goal. “The sweet isn’t as sweet without the bitter” is one of my favorite quotes because I feel it is right on the mark. We really want it, and if we have to sit in the holding room for a while, then that is what we shall do. For now, I will just have to imagine the sweet taste of victory running down my throat, because eventually we will get over this wall. We will succeed because we do want it badly enough!

If you want to want watch the lecture, click here for the link.


Tiff said...

wasn't that speech so awesome!! I loved and then made Tanner watch it with me! If you have a chance try to find the 20/20 show from the week he died. OMG! So moving. That speech was so inspiring!

Sharon said...

Nessa Dearest
You know from being raised in the church that all great Christians are sent by God into the wilderness for training. Moses at age 40 was a general in the army and lived in a palace, but God did not have him rescue his people then. No, he sent him into the wilderness for 40 years where he was a shepherd,which I am sure was not in his career plan. Then God had him rescue the Isrealites. Later,even after David had been anointed king, God allowed him to be chased around the desert by King Saul for the next 10 years, running for his life--something that wouldn't look all that good on one's resume. The point is anyone chosen by God to do great things has to have a certain amount of time in the desert. More annoying still is the fact that everybody else also has to spend a certain amount of time in the desert. We all grumble and moan and whine about it. Nobody likes
it. But ultimately how you deal with your time in the desert helps to form your character. Some people become embittered, some people turn to God, some people turn away from God. Advice from your mother: this is a time when God has allowed you to be in a desert (don't tell Aunt BB you're in a desert) and things are not going at all as planned. Turn to God and ask Him to be with you and to teach you what you need to know to be able to live your life and do great things for this world. Expect to spend some time in the desert. Don't fight it--it only prolongs your time there. It's not such a bad thing. Anyone who is honest can recount numerous times in wilderness training. Remember, Mommy loves Vanessa, Daddy loves Vanessa, Aunt Nancy loves Vanessa--Everybody loves Vanessa (Nancy's book to you).
Your mama who has spent plenty of time in wilderness training

LILY said...

The poem is very nice!

I also listend to Prof. Randy Pausch's 'last lecture' and the 'brick wall' comment impressed me the most. Unforturenately, I couldn't remember the exact words he used due to my poor English. So, I googled it and the first link appeared is your blog. :)
Love to know there are someone else like the lecture too.

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