Arn't I A Woman?: "Very few moments matter in life"



Feb 16, 2012

"Very few moments matter in life"

This quote resonated with me when I heard it recently. At first I thought, that's totally true; not many "big moments" exist in someone's life. The ones where, in a split second, everything's changed. Sometimes maybe you don't even know they are those moments until years after they have happened. But you only have a few of them. I'm gonna go ahead and take a break here and just say that I am listening to all the best Whitney Houston songs right now and her death is still very fresh and I may be feeling a little crazy and not able to turn my thoughts into anything but written gibberish.

Actually Whitney Houston can probably just be tied into exactly what I'm talking about. Here's the second part of my thoughts on how frequently important moments happen in life. While I have had a few "big" moments, many things that have shaped the direction I have taken in life have been because of the sum of many "small" moments. Moments that, isolated, may be insignificant. And damn Whitney is bringing it home right now on my speakers. 

...Ok so let me try and tie Whitney into this. The big moment is, of course, Whitney's death. But the little moments are what led her up to her demise. Much speculation leads to a history of drug addiction. I would venture to guess mental illness as well. I believe alcoholism and drug addiction are often the results of some greater symptom- depression, anxiety, etc. 

So which are the moments that matter? 
I liked the idea of having these huge, epic moments in life a) because I am a super dramatic person and like to pretend life is some epic soap opera, and b) because maybe it would let me relax a little bit in my daily life. Instead of worrying all the time, like everything is some huge decision or situation, I could just be still. And enjoy things a bit more. 

But then I feel like if you discount all those seemingly inconsequential moments, it doesn't leave much room for accountability. 

Perhaps sequential small moments are what change things, and the big moments are the sum of each sequence of small moments. In a sequence of small moments Whitney Houston perhaps could have addressed an addiction or illness she was facing more adequately, and as a result, there would be no big moment of her death. Maybe she would have had some huge comeback ala Mariah Carey and lived 50 more years. 

I guess the point is, maybe every moment matters, and maybe none of them do. You could probably look at it a thousand different ways, and the truth is probably somewhere in the middle. 

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Sojourner Truth

Well, children, where there is so much racket there must be something out of kilter. I think that 'twixt the negroes of the South and the women at the North, all talking about rights, the white men will be in a fix pretty soon. But what's all this here talking about?

That man over there says that women need to be helped into carriages, and lifted over ditches, and to have the best place everywhere. Nobody ever helps me into carriages, or over mud-puddles, or gives me any best place! And ain't I a woman? Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head me! And ain't I a woman? I could work as much and eat as much as a man - when I could get it - and bear the lash as well! And ain't I a woman? I have borne thirteen children, and seen most all sold off to slavery, and when I cried out with my mother's grief, none but Jesus heard me! And ain't I a woman?

Then they talk about this thing in the head; what's this they call it? [member of audience whispers, "intellect"] That's it, honey. What's that got to do with women's rights or negroes' rights? If my cup won't hold but a pint, and yours holds a quart, wouldn't you be mean not to let me have my little half measure full?

Then that little man in black there, he says women can't have as much rights as men, 'cause Christ wasn't a woman! Where did your Christ come from? Where did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with Him.

If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down all alone, these women together ought to be able to turn it back , and get it right side up again! And now they is asking to do it, the men better let them.

Obliged to you for hearing me, and now old Sojourner ain't got nothing more to say.

Sojourner Truth

Delivered 1851 at the Women's Convention

Akron, Ohio