I’d like to get ahead of the curve, so I’ve already started to think about my new year’s resolutions for next year. Or, as I like to call them, “Well-Intended Fantasies About How I Can Become a Better Person That Will No Doubt Fizzle Out Sometime Around January 3.” WIFs for short.
According to the people closest to me, I am a candidate for many forms of self-improvement. I can’t really argue with these people — if I did, I might be deprived of vital services. So, in an earnest effort to change my life before my WIFs expire, here is a poem by Portia Nelson called “Autobiography In Five Short Chapters.” In the following year, I’m hoping to get, oh, I don’t know… Maybe to the end of Chapter 3?
“Autobiography In Five Short Chapters”
by Portia NelsonChapter One I walk down the street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I fall in. I am lost....I am helpless. It isn't my fault. It takes forever to find a way out. Chapter Two I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I pretend I don't see it. I fall in again. I can't believe I am in this same place. But, it isn't my fault. It still takes a long time to get out. Chapter Three I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I see it is there. I still fall in...it's a habit...but, my eyes are open. I know where I am. It is my fault. I get out immediately. Chapter Four I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I walk around it. Chapter Five I walk down another street.