Outside of the Humanities Building, there is a small parking lot with a few meters and a large open space that trucks often use to load things onto the service elevator. In the past, I have seen cars parked in this loading zone; I, myself, have often been guilty of doing so, justifying my action with a quick, “I’m just running into my office for a quick second.” Seconds would turn into minutes and before long, I’d realized I left my car in the loading zone and like any good Christian, I’d pray, “Lord, please don’t let me have a ticket.” or “Lord, please don’t let my car get towed.” Taking this crazy risk seemed worth it, especially when the nearest parking was a block away and wasn’t guaranteed.
Anyway, it seems that Facilities and Management had had enough and decided to paint the Loading Dock space in bright yellow as well as post this sign. You’d have to be really brave to park in the Loading Zone.
As I walked pass this sign, I couldn’t help but chuckle at the sign and think about the times in my life when I have tried to park myself in spots that are meant for loading only; when I misuse the purpose of the loading zone. Usually, you park in loading zones when you are actively transporting something from one place to another. Loading zones are not rest spots; you either drop something off or pick up something and then MOVE ON! It can be dangerous to park in a spot meant for active loading. And, it can be unfortunate to find yourself in a Loading Zone and miss your opportunity to either drop off or pick up something you need for your journey.
As mentioned early, yes, I am guilty. I parked in the Loading Zone in front of the Humanities Building many times and DID NOT get a ticket. I have also been guilty of misusing other Loading Zone opportunities in my life. Whether it has been refusing to “drop off” past hurts or lingering doubts about who I am and where I am supposed to be, yes I am guilty. I have also been guilty of not “picking up” some tools I needed for my journey, only to realize, in hind sight, that these tools were necessary.
As I walked past the Loading Zone, I chuckled not only because I found the sign amusing, but also because of the realization that came with it: Today, I can walk past the Loading Zone and know that I am not stuck in a place I am not supposed to be. I can walk past the Loading Zone and know that I am not illegally parked. I am moving on. There are still areas in my life and thoughts I need to drop off and places where I need to pick up tools–but that’s called living. The most important thing is that I am not stationary, I am not parked. I am moving on…I am moving on in my health and wellness (trying to put some better eating habits in place)…I am moving on in my professional and academic life (not procrastinating!)…I am moving on in my relationships (trying to be honest with those I love and love better)…I am moving on…and it feels good.
“It requires greater courage to preserve inner freedom, to move on in one’s inward journey into new realms, than to stand defiantly for outer freedom. It is often easier to play the martyr, as it is to be rash in battle.” ~Rollo May
I love the quote above by Rollo May. While some may desire to be a martyr, I don’t. I want to live and work hard and long! I want to spend my life working on worthwhile pursuits. But to do this, I must keep moving, and work to be freed from things that bind me internally (like parking in loading zones!)
It requires greater courage to move on…