When I was little one of my favorite pastimes was building roads in our gravel driveway. I would make elaborate highways by pushing the gravel aside to form paths through the rocks. Then I would run my toy cars along the roads pretending I was going all sorts of places. I remember spending hours crawling around and designing this wonderland of fantasy. Each night when my father came home from work, he’d pull his car into the driveway and smash all my hard work. I pleaded with him not to, but it didn’t seem as important to him as it was to me. So the next morning I would start again. But after a while I became so frustrated with the daily destruction that I gave up playing in the driveway all together. I was angry with my father about this. I thought he was being totally unreasonable. But from his point of view, my imaginary world was not as significant as protecting his car at night by pulling it into the garage. Besides, he wasn’t all that thrilled about me playing with cars. Little girls weren’t supposed to do that. And there was the “messed up” gravel in the driveway that everyone could see.
We live in a transitory world. Everything changes all the time. I didn’t know that when I was little, but now I wish I’d just kept on playing with my cars in the driveway and rebuilding the roads every day. I missed doing it. What sense did it make to become angry and stop doing an activity that I enjoyed so much? I wanted what I’d built to be permanent. It never will be. What endures is the pleasure I got from building those roads.