Life’s Illusions

Ok, I admit it. I am a sucker for a big production. I love things like the Opening Ceremonies at the Olympics. I love to get swept up in something beautiful and musical and inspiring. It is good for the soul — to exit your current life for a few minutes and be totally exported to a different world. I was especially excited to see what Vancouver would offer because I had commuted to Vancouver from Denver for more than a year for a position I held in North Vancouver. I love the city and the wonderful people of Canada.

So maybe I was a bit biased but I was moved. (And seriously — how they made the floor look SO much like there were whales is still amazing to me.) I was most struck by the segment on the Plains … the green images on the floor … the boy soaring in the air … the haunting lyrics of Both Sides Now sung by Joni Mitchell. I can’t get those images or that song out of my head, specifically the verse:

Tears and fears and feeling proud
To say I love you right out loud
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds
I’ve looked at life that way

But now old friends are acting strange
They shake their heads, they say I’ve changed
Well something’s lost, but something’s gained
In living every day

I’ve looked at life from both sides now
From win and lose and still somehow
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all

I used to believe that:

— I would get older and wiser and somehow that would make the world easier to understand
— Living an intentional life would be easy and unconditionally embraced by those who love you
— Truth eventually wins out, good always triumphs over evil, and that everything happens for a reason

It is a slightly unsettling notion that with time, the only thing I am sure of is that I really don’t know life at all.

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