It is my purpose in life to encourage others to pursue their dreams. I often joke that my business card should read "Bob Perks, Reminder." I believe there are basic rules in life we already know. My job is to remind you of them. My purpose is to help you remember that you are never alone, always loved and created to accomplish great things.
I also see myself serving as an example. Both as an example of what one should do and what one shouldn't do in life. I've done both.
I've had enough challenges to keep me humble and enough opportunities to live a happy fulfilled life
So my life leads me on a wonderful journey crossing paths with some of the most incredible people.
We all have so much to give others and so much more to learn from them.
It was during a recent trip to the park I discovered I had much in common with weeds.
"Isn't the fall foliage magnificent?" I said to the woman next to me.
"Yes, it is. I begin my visits here at the first sign of fall. Over the course of a few weeks I see these trees change slowly. It's like watching a fireworks display in slow motion," she said.
"I never thought of it that way," I replied.
"I see myself as a tree. My friend is a weed," she said.
I started laughing and she turned to me with this very serious look on her face.
"I mean it. My roots run deep. I found my place and planted myself there. My friend plants herself temporarily in one place and grows there until she blossoms. Then as the wind blows, she flies on to a new place," she said.
I thought for a moment and replied, "But at least she's been to more places than you."
"You must be a weed, too," she said and walked away.
I stood there feeling abandoned and somewhat insulted.
Driving home I thought about what she said. Was I a weed? Could I see myself as a tree?
When I arrived at home I found the answer. It's not that I hadn't noticed them before, but suddenly I was very aware of the two trees located directly behind my house.
"They are huge!" I said.
I actually crawled up into the bushes and stood in between them. I felt so small and lost.
My wife, Marianne came outside and saw me standing there.
"Okay, I'll ask. What are you doing?"
"I'm not big enough to be a tree. I can't for a moment see myself just standing here for my entire life," I said.
"All right, you're not a tree," she said.
"Am I a weed?" I asked. "I know I don't stay in one place very long, but people don't like weeds."
"What's this all about?" she asked.
I went on to explain what happened at the park. By now she shouldn't be surprised at all by anything I do. Still, she had that look on her face.
"Bob, you are neither. Together you and I are a rose bush. I'm the rose and you are the thorn," she said smiling.
"Come on in the house before the squirrels start climbing on you," she said laughing.
"You know some weeds are beautiful!" I shouted as she walked away.
I stood there for a few more minutes trying to decide. Suddenly a gust of wind came down over the hill. I looked up and saw the branches on both trees swaying. Then another gust swirled around the house and I could see the bigger branches bending from the force.
"I'm not that strong," I said to myself.
Then I looked down at my feet and saw the weeds. I had just pulled them the week before and there they were again.
"Determined! That's it. I am a weed. I may not be as strong as these trees, but I am determined to keep growing!" I yelled toward the house.
I turned to see my neighbors standing in their yard watching me.
"What does she know? She's only a rose!"
© Bob Perks 2004