“Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness. ” — Martin Luther King
There was a lot on my mind going to bed last night, canceled tests, staffing and project pipeline concerns, health issues… in general, it was darkness all over. Eyes opened up before the alarm rang this morning, and I started my day with the “Dream Big” podcast my friend forwarded. Donald Miller’s “How to pivot quickly and wisely” while clearing up the kitchen and brewing my morning coffee helped clear the mind. I had indeed given negativity a microphone last night. I am an upbeat person, rarely under stress, or without a smile, but I also possess the darkness to overthink anything and everything to a point of no return.
Shifting focus, here is to “Project 250”, a personal project based on Michael Sorkin’s Two Hundred Fifty Things an Architect Should Know.
78. The quality of light passing through ice.
Architecture teaches you to complicate the simplest, and simplify the most complex. The analysis and synthesis process eventually carry through all facets of life, clouding the judgement. You own your light, you own your sky, but you also own the clouds. The quality of light passing through the ice… the sunlight passing through the clouds.. Unless you make deliberate attempts to keep your sky clear from dirt and ice, you will drown in the darkness of the clouds you created.
A quarantine, or a recession that will follow the quarantine should not affect who I am as a professional. Twenty years of education, learning, skills and experience cannot be undone within ninety days of lockdown. We are all concerned about the economy and employment, but when the careers are as long as ours, we are bound to have recessions/ slow downs and we are resilient enough to survive the cyclical occurrences.
The bottom line is, my ethics, morals, dreams and goals in life are independent of the external circumstances as employment and economy. There will be moments to pivot and evolve, moments to take a step back and read the situation, moments to prioritize, but as with all the women of color before me, if I don’t stay true to who I am, if I don’t manage to stay the course, if I don’t seek encouragement and support explicitly, darkness will throw a shroud to end me.