on being a duck

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Shared on the Vancouver Island Dragon Boat Teams Facebook page

I love, love, LOVE this analogy.

It is so who I am. Most of the time.

At other times I am the fake explosive duck I’m sure I’ve seen in a Bugs Bunny cartoon. Elmer Fudd thinks it’s harmless … then realises it’s fake … and then thinks it’s harmless again until the moment it blows up in his face.

I have been known to do that … blow up when I (and people around me) least expect it … but most of the time I am the duck in the picture above.

‘You are so organised,’ people say.

On the surface, yes.

Inside I am like the internal workings of an ant nest or beehive — ideas, responsibilities and ‘things to do’ running all over the place, narrowly avoiding bumping into each other, each with its own important role to fill.

Internally I’m also somewhat like my new Nespresso milk frother. There is a fine line between putting the right amount of milk in so the machine does its job properly, and overfilling it so, without warning, it overflows, making a huge mess and causing great angst.

Most of the time my internal turmoil and chaos is my own fault. I take on too much and I’m a perfectionist. People see the organised exterior and think, ‘She can cope,’ and I often can’t say no. If I’m honest, I don’t want to say no most of the time — I like being busy.

It’s not that I take on an impossible-to-achieve amount; things get done to a deadline and if I tell you I’m going to do something, then it will be done. Sometimes the ferocious paddling under the surface is extreme, but never has it been out my control.

Whenever the surface ‘calm’ cracks, I am quick to smooth it over. When I’m asked if everything is ok, I will often say it is — because I know I’ll get through it; that’s who I am. But, recently I have learned to delegate a little and to accept some assistance; I won’t stop paddling, but am happy to allow myself the luxury of going with the current — just a bit.

I like that people feel they can rely on me. I enjoy helping people. I also love the personal satisfaction of having taken something challenging on, and achieving it — like biting off more than (people think) you can chew, and finally swallowing it without choking in the process.

I know one or two people who have learned how to ‘play the system’, to always get what they want without having to work for it — at all. I have to wonder where the satisfaction is in that.

I’d rather be a duck.


2 thoughts on “on being a duck

  1. I love the ‘duck’ analogy! I agree with your final comment…..’I’d rather be a duck’.
    Yes, the paddling often gets very hard, almost too hard to manage, but how satisfying it is to finally paddle to the smooth part of life’s lake and say, ‘I made it’. Self satisfaction to me is the ultimate reward for determined hard work. At this stage of my life I find it easier to accept that there are people out there who unfairly play the system so well. My final thought is that in the end they may find they have to paddle as hard as they can to maintain their success and satisfaction in a life honestly lived.
    ‘Tough times never last. Tough people do’.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. How true! You are one of the most tough people I know (in the nicest way) … just giving all the time and asking for little in return. The tough people are the ones we remember long after the poachers are gone.


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