Building, Growing, and Learning

The concept of building was introduced to society thousands of years ago as man discovered the need for protection, security, and structure. Cement, bricks, and wood have been essential tools used for the construction of buildings. Cement can crack. Bricks can crumble. Wood can splinter. Foundations can fail. Buildings can fall. Windows can shatter.

When I was younger and had bad dreams I would wake up in the middle of the night sweating in my matching pajamas, with tear stained cheeks, calling for my mom through the dark hallway. She would hear my voice and respond immediately by running down the hallway to lay in my bed and stroke my hair, reassuring me that everything was going to be okay until I fell back into a deep sleep. “It was just a dream Pexie, tomorrow you are going to wake up and go to school – everything will be the same. It was just a dream,” and with that lullaby repeating in my head and the soft touch of her hand against my scalp, I fell back asleep on the warm side of my pillow.

However, when I face failures, my mom does not run down the dark hall to comfort me. Instead, she encourages me to build upon my weaknesses and use it as motivation to become stronger. She tells me not to forget my mistakes, but rather to manipulate them as a tool for self-improvement.

I used to build with toy blocks in my basement. When they crumbled down, I wouldn’t give up. I would start over and try again, avoiding making the same mistakes I had made in the past. I would place the blocks in different positions over and over again until the structure was strong enough to stand on its own. This taught me to use my failures as a tool to grow and build upon my character.

If one treats the negative side of reality as a dream, one may be disappointed with the outcome of their actions. You cannot always wake up the next morning and forget about the nightmares that haunted you the night before because it may return in reality. The only way we can grow and develop is if we use our mistakes as another tool in the toolbox and build upon ourselves by preventing the future from repeating itself.

Forgetting our nightmares can backfire. If we are faced with a familiar situation than that of a bad dream in reality and expect to avoid it, bigger problems can arise. If a building falls and we try to rebuild it forgetting about the pervious failure, we can make the same mistake again. If I were to return to my box of blocks in the basement and tried to rebuild the structure I had once made before, it would most likely crumble. Since the last time I visited this task, I forgot about all the reasons why it did not work and fell down in the first place.

Friends can be lost. Hearts can be broken. Personalities can change. Cement can crack. Bricks can crumble. Wood can splinter. Foundations can fail. Buildings can fall. Windows can shatter. However, we don’t ever have to stop building, both upon ourselves and upon improving the world.