Connecting the Puzzle Pieces of Life
By Mary Megna
People are like a puzzle. They have outside pieces and inside pieces. In the cardboard version, it is easy to perceive the connection of the outside pieces because they provide a definitive border. The same can be said for a person. We see size, shape and color. We hear their words and see their expressions and actions. These are their outside pieces. From the border these pieces provide, we often make judgments about a person without taking into account the inside pieces.
Once the border of a puzzle is assembled the challenging work begins as we search to find the connections for each random inside piece. Will it be the color that gives a hint, the shape or the sliver of picture that enables the right placement? It takes a delicate and determined effort to achieve and appreciate the complete picture that a finished puzzle provides. One may attempt to connect pieces with little thought by randomness or sheer luck but progress is rarely made without a sense of insight or understanding of relationship.
So, too, is the work of understanding a person in their entirety. We may see their anger, lack of effort or offensive behavior and say, “Ha, ha! I know this person and dislike what I see.” However, every action has a connection that may be visible or may not, just like the unconnected cardboard pieces. Each plays a part of the whole puzzle of a person and has their reason for being. It is just the association that has yet to be determined by the viewer. Anger may stem from an abuse unseen by the public eye. Lack of effort may be aches, pains or disease that is silently suffered. Offensive behavior may be an old coping mechanism formed out of trauma from days past unbeknownst to even the user. As with the completed puzzle, to really understand a person takes effort, patience and the desire to know them from the inside out. The result will be a relationship with depth and love that goes beyond boundaries.