“I can do it myself!”
I can eat my lunch without your helping me.
I can walk along the wall without your holding my hand.
I can solve the math problem without your giving me hints.
I can make this decision without calling my parents.
I can figure this out without talking to my boss.
I can do it myself.
Self reliance is important.
As is the courage and the willingness to put in the work to gain a new skill or to deepen your understanding or to acquire a new insight.
But the downside of self reliance is arrogance.
I know how to do it.
I know how to do it better than you know how to do it.
I don’t need you.
I don’t need your help.
I don’t need your support or suggestions or back up.
Because I can do it myself.
Or, if not “I” we.
We can do it ourselves.
We don’t need you.
This past week, during record breaking and heart breaking cold, the Texas energy grid collapsed. Along with all the other reasons, arrogance played a part. We can manage it on our own. We don’t need you.
Racism continues to tear at the fabric of our communities and our country. My skin color makes me better, smarter, more deserving than you. I don’t need you to tell me what to do to understand it or to face it or to fix it.
America love it or leave it.
At least that is what they told me years ago when I was challenging our nation’s involvement in the Vietnam War. I don’t hear the words spoken aloud anymore, but the attitude remains. Ours is the best. We are the best. We are number one even when we are not.
As I said as I began
Self reliance is a strength.
Until it is not.
Until that moment when I need you.
And you need me.
If arrogance is not include on that list of deadly sins
It should be.