|(c) 2008 Derek Ramsey (Ram-Man) and the Chanticleer Garden|
Have you ever found yourself faced with a big task and wondering how you'll ever reach the end? And finally when you have come to the end, you find yourself at an equally difficult place––the start of something new? You have conquered one big mountain only to find yourself at the base of another. The wonderful words of wisdom “despise not small beginnings” always bring me comfort when I'm facing seemingly insurmountable hurdles. Great works usually start small. How else to begin something but to start at the beginning?
I'm reminded that every spring, nature goes through this transformation. Emerging from winter, every tree and plant seems dead but upon closer inspection, they're just resting. Getting ready for the great work to begin. They start lifeless––naked––and by the time summer arrives, they are clothed in blossoms of full maturity. One of my favorite examples is how a brittle, black, pinpoint of a seed so easily crushed can grow and unfold into a blazing, red poppy, full of vigor and expectancy.
Or what about the sunrise? The day starts out dark, shrouded in blackness, then instead of bursting forth into full radiance, the dawn slowly unfolds––a first light, rose-pink in appearance. Faint. Perhaps even appearing fragile. But everyday that emerges is new, strong, and so full of promise.
|(c) Lisa Tancsics|
I think we need to live with the same expectancy and promise. We need to embrace our small beginnings, our moments of obscurity, and never forget where we have started. For if we don't remember where and why we started, will we ever be able to grow? To track our journey? To see if we have indeed arrived at a good, satisfactory end?
For me, my current “small beginning” is embarking on the journey of publishing my first novel. It has been a meaningful, difficult––and at times, crazy––endeavor, but what I have learned is priceless to me. And humbling...oh, so very humbling! But I cherish it and will do my best to never forget this venture.
Everyone has to start somewhere with something. Whether it's an author releasing their debut novel, a student heading off to college, parents having their first child, or a doctor performing their first operation, we have all experienced a small beginning.
What are yours? What fond memories do you hold dear about that adventure? What advice can you give? Where have you grown since then? And can you see how that small beginning perhaps prepared you for something bigger?