I find inspiration in the strangest places sometimes.
This weekend, it was in the kids’ movie Kung Fu Panda. Have you seen it?
It’s one of those you-can-do-anything types of movies with a peaceful, Japanese-inspired soundtrack and an old turtle full of wisdom. In a Karate Kid meets The Biggest Loser kind of way, “Po the Panda finds himself chosen as the Dragon Warrior despite the fact that he is obese and a complete novice at martial arts.”
So you can imagine how it goes — Po has a Kung Fu “master” who teaches him how to fight, but who more importantly, teaches him how to believe in himself.
There are some good lines, such as:
Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. But today is a gift — that is why it’s called “the present.”
But then then are some not-so-obvious moments that were profound to me, such as this dialogue:
Oogway [the old wise turtle]: My friend, the panda will never fulfill his destiny, nor you yours until you let go of the illusion of control.
Shifu [the younger Kung Fu master who is training Po]: Illusion?
[points at peach tree]
Oogway: Look at this tree, Shifu: I cannot make it blossom when it suits me nor make it bear fruit before its time.
Shifu: But there are things we *can* control: I can control when the fruit will fall, I can control where to plant the seed: that is no illusion, Master!
Oogway: Ah, yes. But no matter what you do, that seed will grow to be a peach tree. You may wish for an apple or an orange, but you will get a peach.
Shifu: But a peach cannot defeat Tai Lung!
Oogway: Maybe it can, if you are willing to guide, to nurture it, to believe in it.
Peaches were on my mind anyway — since my last post about how the baby in my belly is the size of a peach this week.
And as the peach tree petals blew in the cartoony breeze, I thought about how — like the peaches on that tree, I am harvesting my own little hero. Someone who – with guidance, nurturing and belief – will have limitless ability.
But, as the dialogue so sweetly said, I cannot “make it blossom when it suits me nor make it bear fruit before its time.”
And isn’t it true? We can only control so much — and really, all we need to think about is doing our best with the gift of today: “the present.”