Today someone said to me, “I need to know what page you are living on.” I restrained myself from correcting her prepositional faux pas, and bit my tongue instead of responding sarcastically with: “Oh yeah, well I need to know where you’re at.” I did however sit stunned for a moment.
She had not asked me if we were on the same page. She wanted to know on what page I was living. Clearly she figured I was on a completely different page than the rest of the people in the room.
Sometimes I wonder if I’m not only living on a different page, but in a completely different chapter or maybe even an entirely different book. This metaphor can play out in several areas of my life. When my boys tell me they’re going to Falador to participate in fletching where they can slay some Dagonnoth, I start asking them where Falador is and what fletching means… and before I can ask one more question, they’re rolling their eyes and half way up the stairs. Unaware of any of these computer terms I feel like I am definitely living on a different page from my boys.
As harmless as that scenario is, there are others where I end up feeling isolated or misunderstood. When my husband and I are trying to solve an issue and we can’t see eye to eye, being on a different page can be painful. It’s tempting to give in and say that we’re on the same page. But sometimes we’re just not. It’s not easy to be on page 53 when he is on page 22 (not that he’s slower than I am – that’s for another blog; kidding). Sometimes it means I simply have to wait for him to catch up, or vice versa.
Likewise if I’m living in a different book, there’s even more isolation. This happened just today. When I was told I needed to share what page I am living on, I realized that sometimes denial of particular things in my life leads me to live in a world that is void of genuine living. My page number is not only different, the book in which I am living is totally unrelated to the ones around me.
For instance, I may be living in the book, “Walden,” while my friends are living in “A Call of the Wild.” That creates a major disconnect. And until either I am willing to step out of my peaceful lakeside living or they are willing to step out of the frozen adventure they are living, it’s impossible to find any unity.
Sometimes I am aware that my life is unfolding on a different page than those around me. The danger is when I don’t see that I am living on a different page, or worse in a different book. Thankfully I have friends in my life that are willing to step into my book and pull me back into the one I should be living. I have friends that will walk into that uncomfortable and unfamiliar place to pick me up and grab me back into a page that is at least closer to the one those I love are reading and living. I give thanks to God once again for the blessing of good friends who are not afraid to go there. In addition, I hope to enter into their books, if need be. I want to be that type of friend for them. A friend who will enter into the Wild and bring them back to the peaceful retreat of Walden Pond.