Dear Ellington Family –
With the holiday season upon us, I find myself wondering about the ebb and flow of life. What does it mean when people state, "I'm running on empty"? Does it mean they are out of gas or without energy? Does it mean they are limping across the finish line? I suppose.
Yet, even when in this state of mind or physicality, their engine keeps running. They may be parked and idling; they may be coasting, but nonetheless, they are running.
Does this feeling ever stop? Do others feel the same way? Even in my quietest moments; when my body is still, my mind tends to race.
In his iconic song, Running On Empty, Jackson Browne sings:
Looking out at the road rushing under my wheels
I don't know how to tell you all just how crazy this life feels
I look around for the friends that I used to turn to, to pull me thru
Looking into their eyes I see they're running too
I submit that we are all more alike than we typically recognize. Whatever our life's context and unique experiences, we cannot separate ourselves from one another; no matter how many false barriers we create.
I have begun to realize that when I quiet my mind and run on empty, the easier it becomes to remove the illusions and truly see my fellow human. For me, running on empty is tapping into an unlimited energy; an energy that resides inside each and every one of us.
At the conclusion of Forrest Gump's Run Across America he stated, "My momma always said you've got to put the past behind you before you can move on. I think that was what all that running was about."
We all run in our own way and for our own reasons. We live our lives and co-create with others. We balance our service to self with our service to others. We are educators, parents, citizens, and brothers and sisters of humanity. We are the Ellington Family.
Best wishes to you and your loved ones during this joyous season.
Dr. Scott V. Nicol, Superintendent