There are days when I think to myself, “What else could possibly go wrong? How much harder could things be?” There have been several intervals in my life where this thinking served as a prominent interruption. That’s just it, it interrupted everything. If I really stop to contemplate it though–I let it. We build our lives, and our characters, through our own actions and choices. Unfortunately, extrinsic factors (i.e. divorce, breakups, loss) seem to govern our attitudes more than our own minds, at times.
Recently, while reading The Scarlet Letter, I began to think about this idea of choosing. Hester makes a choice about her life within the novel. She chooses to make the best of a situation, and beyond this, she not only makes the best of it for herself but also utilizes her circumstance to serve others.
The scarlet symbol adorned on her chest, [this letter] a symbol of her calling. Such helplessness was found in her–so much power to do, and power to sympathize, –that many people refused to interpret the scarlet A by its original signification [adultress]. They said that it meant Able; so strong was Hester, with a woman’s strength.
An example of an individual making the best of the worst and eventually transforming for the better because of her chosen attitude.
The effect of the symbol–or, rather, of the position in respect to society that was indicated by it–on the mind of Hester herself, was powerful and peculiar.
I am amazed by the power of choice in our lives, the power it has to liberate one from the constraints of an ‘interrupted’ life of happiness and joy. We must choose to to allow life’s bumps to empower us, though. Like Hester, we must free ourselves of hostility and irritation for in this, “Hatred, by a gradual and quiet process, will eventually be transformed to love.”