Guidelines: A Dose of Duck Feet

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By Simon Ambit 

“I wish that I had duck feet and I can tell you why. You can splash around in duck feet; you don’t have to keep them dry. I wish that I had duck feet. No more shoes, no shoes for me! The man down at the shoe store would not have my size you see.”

Just over 100 years ago this week, 113 years ago on March 2 to be exact, Theodor Seuss Geisel, the man we know as Dr. Seuss, was born. His writings were always original, creative and a bit funny. He often left a message in his words that could carry beyond the edges of the page, right into the center of our heart.

As Seuss’s story of the young boy with the desire for duck feet continues, the lad decides against duck feet and transitions his wishes to antlers. Then after cycling through thoughts of a water spout upon his top, a long, long tail, a trunked nose and ultimately becoming a which-what-who, he finally comes to the conclusion that being himself is the best that he can be. As the story concludes the young boy puts all the things that he is not aside and states, “I think there are some things I do not wish to be. And that is why I think that I just wish to be like ME.”

Throughout the course of the past weeks, I have had conversations with a number of fine people who are fighting battles with the formidable foes of anxiety and depression. To my dear friends and others wading through the same tribulations, I want to say that you are in my prayers. Secondly, I want you to know that each one of you are an absolutely unique and divinely important individual; full of character, talent and ability and surrounded by those who want what is best for you. We care about you so much even though we may not say or show it the way we need to at times.

In a world that often tells us that we have to run faster, jump farther, or have special duck feet if we are to stand out amongst the crowd, I say that is a fraudulent fallacy of phony phooey! Each of us was created the way we are for a reason and with the potential to become our best and ever-improving self. You can make it through whatever comes your way.

I offer the words of Dr. Seuss from his book “Oh the places you’ll go.” Speaking of hard times he wrote, “There are some down the road between hither and yon, that can scare you so much, you won’t want to go on. But on you will go though the weather be foul, on you will go though your enemies prowl. On you will go though the Hacken-Kracks howl. Onward up many a frightening creek, though your arms may get sore and your sneakers may leak. On and on you will hike and I know you’ll hike far and face up your problems whatever they are! And will you succeed? Yes, you will indeed, 98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed! Kid you’ll move mountains!”

Life is good, be your great self!