RBG and me
This afternoon Himself and I went to the movies. We like to attend the show that starts about 4:00 in the afternoon. Today we saw "On the Basis of Sex," based on the early life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. It was an excellent film and provided a lot of conversation on the drive home.
Mindful that I am in the deep-rose-color stage of life, according to Erikson, I'm aware that in the past two years I have done a lot of thinking about what my life has meant and how best to use the time that remains.
We'd seen the other RBG movie a couple of months ago, the documentary called, simply, "RBG," and I thought at that time about how much this woman has accomplished, and how many have benefitted from what she has done.
I've always been a behind-the-scenes kind of person. Organizations elect me secretary, to take the notes and preserve the record. Most of my jobs have been support roles -- secretary, dissertation typist, assistant to head of school -- and I have always relished being part of the lead person's success. At times old childhood messages ("You HAVE the ability. Why don't you do better/more?") gave me pause, making me wonder if there was something wrong with me that I didn't crave limelight. As a seminarian, I learned to construct and deliver a sermon and became very good at both, but I never felt the call to preach and preside. I knew I belonged in a hospital setting, meeting folks at the bedside.
Most of us are not granted the "big picture" accomplishments, such as those of Mrs. Ginsburg. Some of us supported the triumphs of others or made our own smaller differences. My husband, an architect, designed buildings -- most importantly (in my view) a wonderful addition to our church -- that will live on long after we are gone. Basically a quiet man, he doesn't talk about how he feels about that. To me, it is a "medium picture" accomplishment. My own are of the "very small picture" variety: As a hospital chaplain, I held and listened to individuals beset by grave illness or unexpected loss. I am convinced that the world needs all of our accomplishments for good, from the ones that impact thousands of people to those that help far fewer. Some of us serve on the Supreme Court; others throw starfish back into the ocean.