The moment will arrive when you are comfortable with who you are, and what you are– bald or old or fat or poor, successful or struggling when you don’t feel the need to apologize for anything or to deny anything. To be comfortable in your own skin is the beginning of strength. ~ Charles B. Handy
When I was little, I played a game called Button, button, who’s got the button? It was a rainy day, solve the mystery game. We would stand in a circle, holding our hands out in front, cupped together. There was one special person who was it.
The it person was given a button. He or she would step out of their spot, and begin walking around inside the circle, putting their hands in each persons hands. Somewhere along the way, they’d drop the button into a pair of hands while maintaining the ritual until they returned to their starting point. No one knew where the button was except for the it person and receiver.
Then, the it person would say: “Button, button, who’s got the button?” One by one, we’d go around the circle, taking our turn at guessing by saying: “Danny has the button!” etc.. until someone solved the mystery.
As I got older I experienced the evolution of The Button Game. In school, at work, in social gatherings, in church – everywhere – people were playing. There seems to be an it person in most circles, sometimes recognized by all. Sometimes known only to the receiver. The it player knows just what to do or say to push buttons.
Our grown-up version of Button, Button is a mystery I’ve been puzzling over. No one, except maybe the it person, seems to like the game, but still we play?
The mystery isn’t about the it person. It’s easy enough to push buttons if you’re paying attention at all. For the longest time, I thought the mystery of The Button Game was learning how to respond to the button pusher.
But I’ve come to believe that the real mystery is the fact that we’re all grown-up and still collecting buttons. Charles Handy says that to be comfortable in your own skin is the beginning of strength. That may well be. I don’t know.
I do know that being comfortable in your own skin is the beginning of grace. When my skin fits, I can quit playing, because it won’t have buttons.