When I was younger I thought almost everything was black and white. My mental filing cabinet looked something like “Good” and “Bad”, “Right” and “Wrong”, “Yes” and “No”. There wasn’t a lot of space for grey areas.
When I say “younger” I basically mean from birth to until I was around sixteen years of age.
When I would be working towards my education, I understood things better by classifying things simply as right and wrong. Holocaust? Bad. Women’s suffrage? Surprisingly, good. When I would be reading through books and came across words that I was unsure of, I would see what context it was in and decide if the word had a good definition or a bad definition. Coerce? Bad. Convince? Good.
The thing is I grew up thinking so many things were set in stone. That my elders knew everything. When my sister was a senior in high school I looked up to her because I thought she knew so much and I knew so little in comparison. She got compliments on her writing style from her college professors. She was clearly brilliant and knew everything in my twelve-year-old brain. When my parents would give me suggestions I always assumed that it would turn out fine because my parents love me and they suggested it…even if they had no control over the situation.
I now am making the slow realization that there are far more grey areas than I thought. Maybe more grey areas than black and white areas. Tons of things are not set in stone. Right and Wrong rules change situationally, and just because someone comes up with an idea doesn’t mean it will go well. There are no promises or guarantees.