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Fire and Rain

Updated: Dec 30, 2022

January 2018

James Taylor's "Fire and Rain" was one of my favorite songs growing up. I'm not sure whether it was Taylor's smooth voice accompanied by the laid back melody floating from the strings of his guitar or the poetic lyrics that got to me. But, I listened to the song over and over again, and I knew every word.

As a kid, I I didn't understand the metaphorical meaning: life is fire, life is rain. The more I continue to read and listen to songs like Taylor's, the more I appreciate the symbolism of the elements of fire and rain in life every day. They bring change. This year, Houston experienced great change through the destruction that the rains Hurricane Harvey brought, and our town was reminded of the good in people. I thought my home was safe until the water started seeping through the walls and up through the carpets as in some horror movie. Then, we lost the oven, microwave, and stove. I can't tell you how thankful we were when McDonald's opened up a few days later. My son would have sat in line for hours to get his 3 hamburgers that day. We were grateful for the workers who were called in, willing to go and cook us a lovely, hot meal. Yes, there was a great deal of devastation for so many - too much - but out of the turmoil, there were blessings.

We may have to search hard for the gifts in the dark and turmoil and force ourselves to find inner strength to put one foot in front of the other and seek out new directions for change because water is extremely powerful as a destructive force in nature and can wash away hopes and dreams. We just have to remember that it also creates change and rebirth, which brings opportunities that we didn't see or have before.

Fire does the same. It destroys, as is shown to us in stories like Harry Potter and the Phoenix - things rise and are reborn from fire. It's the antithesis in life. There's rebirth and change because we learn and grow from what is lost. Only - if we allow ourselves. I think once we embrace the idea that the unwelcome doesn't last forever if we don't let it, and that beautiful opportunities come from the things that are removed from our lives once we let go and embrace new possibilities. It's then that we welcome new people, changes, viewpoints, situations, and experience adventures and freedoms unavailable to us before.

Letting go of what has been lost and instead of waiting for the past to return, be open to the sunshine and love of the now. Know that the fires and rains in life remind us that change is okay and, if we're willing, they help us find new paths with brighter, more beautiful sunrises.

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