by mia hinkle
My mother lived 600 miles from me and before she passed, she would come for a visit once or twice a year. At the end of one of her trips, we were driving to the airport on 465 which suddenly transformed into a virtual parking lot, as we were delayed for an hour in stop-and-go traffic. What a pain! How would we ever make it to the airport the mandatory two hours before take-off? As my blood pressure rose, mile after hot muggy mile, I wondered what could possibly be so important as to inconvenience hundreds of motorists with equally tight schedules.
Then I saw it. Bridge construction! No accident. No stalled car. No crime in progress. Just routine bridge construction. When I settled into the notion that we were just going to crawl toward the airport for a while, it occurred to me that I have never seen bridge construction happening during a thunderstorm, a wind advisory, a snowstorm, or a tornado. Engineers and construction workers alike know that the time to fortify a bridge is during fair weather.
Bridge construction may be a pain in the neck, but consider the alternative: no bridge at all or one that is not safe. When a bridge’s maintenance is neglected, it isn’t long before stress cracks appear. When the traffic gets extraordinarily heavy or the elements get violent, those hairline fractures grow and could cause the entire structure to crumble.
What perfect imagery for how to build and maintain a life. Into every life, a little rain must fall. Storms come to everyone at some time along the way. The time to build friendships and plug into nurturing situations is during fair weather, during the good times. Relationships are the rebar of the bridge, the foundation of the support columns, the strength of the concrete.
What does bridge construction look like in your life?