Trust, Love, and Twenty Dollar Pumpkins

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I was driving along the road the other day, and I saw a pumpkin that had rolled off it's cozy little porch and into the street. It was an nice looking pumpkin, identical to the one illustrated in children's Halloween and Thanksgiving storybooks. I considered, only for a moment, stopping and picking it up. Then I absent mindedly wondered if that would be considered " stealing". I mean, the street is technically public property right? So " legally" it was just as much MY pumpkin at that point as it was it's terrible owners. Makes sense. Then naturally my mind wondered even further ( as it always does), wondering: " If hypothetically I was to stop and pick up that pumpkin and the previous owner saw it and considered me a thief, then couldn't I just pay the difference and move on with my life. How much could a pumpkin like that cost? Seven bucks? maybe twelve? Certainly no more than twenty dollars. Twenty dollars, I decided, was the maximum I would have to re-reimburse the owner for either the taking or destruction of their flawless pumpkin. By this point I was like about a mile out of the neighborhood, but I had just successfully put a " value" to that pumpkin; deciding how much I found it to be worth. I find that I do this quite often with material things...figure out what I think the maximum cost of damage would be if I were to destroy something and someone be upset about it. Then, as expected, my mind went a step further.

How often do I place a value on things that are not easily replaceable? How many things in my life have I come across that simply no amount of money could mend if it were to be broken? The initial idea I kept coming up with was trust. Once someone feels safe in confiding in you, and you become a refuge of sort, trust's value increases to an unmatchable number. Trust is something that once it is taken away, no dollar bill can buy back. No haphazard apology can regain it. At what point do we as humans see trust as something with such high a value that it can not even be accurately described?

On the other hand, what about the things that we can not give a SPECIFIC value to. For instance, love is something else we have decided to try and define in terms of value. We tell ourselves that it's so important to hear, yet we allow ourselves to be annoyed and " not lovable" when we are not in the "mood" to be loved. Funny that it is, but love is "madness" of the heart. A constant battle between mind and spirit. If it's sincere, love is something that can not simply be said but must be demonstrated. I've found that we often times think we can place a value on love simply because we can compare our love for someone or something to the love for someone or something else. Love has no tangible value.

I guess where I am going with this is: There are things in life like smashed or stolen pumpkins that we can fork over a days pay for and move on down the road without missing much. Then, there are other things such as trust and love, that once taken, said, felt, expressed, lost, etc. can not be " paid off", and that have much higher value than any man could buy. Take the time to recognize those infinitely valuable things in your life and always remind yourself, " your no twenty dollar pumpkin."

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