Some evenings, around 7:30, as I relax into my hot tub and exhale my day, a murder of crows flies noisily overhead. Hundreds of them!
I love to tip my head back and watch them pass. It's quite a sight!
What intrigues me is the one or two outliers bringing up the rear after all the others pass.
I identify with those slow crows,
Flying behind their flock,
Too far back to catch the chatter of the group,
Far from the fray of flapping wings,
Discerning the direct route by the masses moving ahead,
I identify with those crows and their benefit of belonging.
Crows fly with crows.
Even though no two crows are the same.
Likewise, humans hang with humans.
Even though no two people are the same.
The flock, gaggle or murder with which we fly uniquely shapes our understanding of who we are, conferring their persona on us.
Here it gets more complex.
How we respond to our myriad experiences and relationships impacts us in crucial as well as counterproductive ways in regard to identity.
We're communal in what we have in common, but it's often our differences that define the persona we give ourselves to, flying up with the flock or back on the fringe.
Our own sense of identity starts with being at home with ourselves, yet our ever-evolving values and beliefs can also separate us from the flock, reinforcing or questioning our identity.
Watching those slow crows made me wonder if they were trying to catch up to belong, or reveling in their independence, seperate from the crowd.
And which one, I mused, was me?