Another Piece of the Puzzle

“The more that I learn about more things is another piece of the puzzle…”

Last week my sister Lori posted a video of my dad and that was one of his quotes.  As I listened I knew that I had heard his puzzle analogy before but couldn’t remember the point.  Then with that last reference to puzzle pieces it all came together and I immediately thought of my blog.  The subject of my blogging is whatever I want it to be – anything that has contributed to my learning and thus to my life – or my own puzzle.  

Dad’s analogy speaks of finding a puzzle but not its accompanying picture. You want to make the puzzle but don’t know what will be the final outcome?   Place a puzzle piece and Voila! you have have a little more understanding of what the picture is going to be.  Maybe you thought it would be a horse but instead it is a house.

 Is anyone else relieved that their life didn’t turn out as they imagined when they were younger?  The younger version of ourselves was missing so many puzzle pieces.  On the other hand – the first thing I do when I construct a jigsaw puzzle is to build a frame of edge pieces.  I am very grateful for my early years and the foundation of love and faith that I constructed while living at home.  This is truly the framework of my life.  So while my younger self may have been innocent, ignorant and inexperienced I was blessed to have parents, family and good friends who helped me create a strong foundation (or framework) in which to begin placing those unknown pieces.

In truth I am thankful that my puzzle isn’t what I imagined even a couple years ago (when I was old and wise).  It seems that life takes so many unexpected twists and turns!  At first it makes me dizzy but seems to always work out better than anticipated.

So… I stopped typing for quite awhile and instead sat pondering and thinking about my life and this puzzle analogy.  Is it my “life” (as in the events that make up my story) or is it my “self” (as in the person that I am becoming)? Obviously they are intertwined.  Do others around me build my puzzle or do I take what I learn from our interactions to make my picture complete on my own?  When I was younger I might have been frustrated by the mystery of it all.  I would have wanted to have the final picture and know what I was working on.  Now I feel quite the opposite.  It may be frustrating or discouraging at times, but I love when things come together.  I love when it is more beautiful than I expected.  I love the adventure of it all!

Here is a copy of my Lori’s Facebook post:

I have the most wonderful memories of time spent with my Dad!! He is sweet and kind and good! He taught me to see beauty every where and with every one. He loves the gospel and studying – and then making us figure it out on our own with just a bit of guidance and questions to make us want to know more. He is constantly learning.
A year or so ago, while my parents were visiting us, he and I sat down to talk. Without him knowing, I turned on my phone to record what he was saying…. Here’s just two minutes on what he has to say about snowed-in cabins and puzzles. Just a little glimpse of the wonders of Daddy conversations. (with a puppy attack at the end!!)

By the way – Christmas season is puzzle season at my house. We have a table set up which is very much in the way of everything. It is even blocking our back door this year. Oh well. We have completed six or seven puzzles in the past couple weeks and are anticipating that Santa will bring one or two new ones for us to work on together. Most of the year I don’t give jigsaw puzzles another thought – but for the next month or two I anticipate creating several masterpieces – and then tearing them down and putting them back on the shelf. I meant to be done with the puzzle analogy but I forgot to say that often people walk by and mess up the puzzle pieces of my life. Sometimes I do it to myself. But just like putting together an old familiar puzzle, this usually means that once I recover I am just better at it than I was before. And now, since I wrote more than intended, I will quote myself and repeat what were once my final lines:

It may be frustrating or discouraging at times, but I love when things come together.  I love when it is more beautiful than I expected.  I love the adventure of it all!

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