The Common Good

Love. Period.

I came across a pottery booth at an arts fair a couple weekends ago. One of the engravings on the wall reminded us that “Everyday a new story begins.“

Blocks spelling 'love.' Gita Kulinitch Studio /
Blocks spelling 'love.' Gita Kulinitch Studio /

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Isn’t that true?

Our lives are a story written day by day, paragraph by paragraph, chapter by chapter, choice by choice. Each day is a blank page awaiting our entry.

A new plot twist. A new character. A few lines about grief. A paragraph about hope. An illustration of love.

How will we fill the page?

We get to decide our story, though not entirely by ourselves. Each of us has a co-author, someone collaborating with us.

We didn’t write the first sentence to our story, the one that involves our birth. The co-author wrote that for us. All of our stories start with the same opening and the same word.

Love. Period.

From there, we choose how our story will unfold day by day. We must decide what will be written with the language of our life.

Our co-author gives us a lot of creative freedom along with suggestions whispered in a small, gentle voice. The final choice is up to us.

We can take our story in many different directions. Each choice sets us on a different course. We always have the option of starting a new chapter and going in yet another direction.

Every day, the story begins anew.

The process isn’t easy, of course. Writing never is. Often, it’s difficult to find the right words to express what our lives are about. We end up using the delete key quite often.

And there are occasional bouts of writer’s block. We’re not sure where to go with the story. We welcome all procrastinations. Eventually, we get an inspiration and find a way to move the storyline along.

We write away until we think we’ve come to the final sentence. That’s when the co-author takes back the keyboard and types in a line. And it’s always the same line.

Love. Period.

It never deviates. Our co-author believes in happy endings and can’t write anything else. No matter where our stories meander, they eventually converge in the same place.

A place that’s not actually an end to the story so much as a change in the setting. The story goes on. There’s more to write. And the writing resumes with a familiar first line.

Love. Period.

Joe Kay is a professional writer living in the Midwest.

Image: Blocks spelling 'love.' Gita Kulinitch Studio /
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