On Meaning

“What’s going to happen?” she wondered. “There has to be a bigger purpose…”

“Why?” he asked honesty.

“Because I need it all to mean something,” she replied, tears welling up in her eyes.

“We all want things to mean something in some bigger plan,” he said, “but what if they don’t? What if the map is being drawn one second at a time? Does that mean it’s all…well..meaningless?” he countered.

“Well, no…” she said. “I would just like some assurances.”

“I’m not sure life gives you those,” he said. “What if the larger point is for us to embrace that things have meaning not because there’s some ‘larger plan,’ but because our small, little plans are beautiful enough? And the mistakes? They don’t need to fit in some larger scheme to be redeemed. They’re redeemed because we learn from them, heal them as best we can, and move forward just a little bit on this ever-evolving, ever-scrolling map we make.”

“Significance,” he went on, “is not assigned from above. It’s assigned from within. Things mean something because they’re important to us, to you, to him. Or her. It’s subjective, by God. And that’s OK. It doesn’t make it less. It probably makes it more.”

“More?” She closed her eyes trying to wrap her head around it all.

“So, my quest for certainty is a fool’s errand?” she wondered.

“No,” he said, “because you’re not a fool. It’s the most human thing in the world, I think. But what if we just got used to embracing the idea that there is no certainty?”

“It might be freeing…” she said, honestly.

“It just might be.”

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