To Burn Or To Build Bridges?
When I was growing up, I used to visit my Grandma every school holiday thanks to Bosslady, aka my Mum. Whenever I'd go there I would not only get wisdom from her, but I would also get a feel of how life away from the city was. Me having being named after Grandma, she was very fond of me and so we used to go to very many places together; market, church, women’s meetings, their version of Vicoba, to till the land, etc. During those visits she would tell me lots of stories, most of which would have a teaching or a lesson to learn at the end of it.
In the recent past I have found myself going back to the wisdom she used to share with me and today as I was thinking about my life (past, present and future [read goals]), I remembered something she used to tell me a lot. She used to say, “Kiraro gitimiagwo”. Loosely translated directly from mother-tongue to English, it means “you don’t poo where you sleep”.
The meaning behind those words is that you never mess up where you sleep or have been sleeping because you will still need to sleep there again when you go back later in the evening, or the next time you are in that same hood. In other words, always leave where you were well because you never know when you might need to go back again.
Remember the idiom about bridges? “Beware of burning bridges. You might need them later in life”
Burning bridges, especially when done intentionally simply means destroying one’s path, connections, reputation, opportunities, etc. The danger in this is that you never know who you might meet again later in life, or how those bridges from your past might just cause you to lose something very important.
Today, sitting on the forth floor of my life, I can’t help but ask myself this question; is it necessarily true that all bridges are worth keeping? If my Grandma was still alive today and I went back to her and shared with her everything that has happened in my life since those days when I was just an innocent girl in pigtails, would she still tell me not to burn bridges? Was Grandma referring to all bridges in someone's life?
If for instance someone was a bad influence to my life, do I still need to maintain that bridge? If someone led me down a path I shouldn’t have go through in the first place, is that still a bridge to maintain? Someone broke your heart and left you for the dead; is that still a bridge worth not burning? Those are some of the thoughts that were running down my mind today as I was reflecting on my life in general.
You who is reading this today, what do you think about burning bridges?
As for me, I will leave you with three schools of thought:
- “Stop telling me not to burn bridges. Some bridges are meant to be burned; some roads are near to be traveled again” ~ Dr. Steve Maraboli.
- “Be careful the bridges you are willing to burn when trying to get ahead. You never know when you’ll need a friend again” ~ Britt Thelemann
- “The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which one to burn” ~ David Russel
Be Ignited. Be Inspired. Be Influenced. Become the best version of yourself you can ever be.