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A New Hatch

There must have been a monstrous mayfly hatch last evening.  The mayflies are evident everywhere around our home.  They are hanging on the railings of our deck, covering our windows and the siding on our house.  A hatch of this magnitude appears to happen once or twice a year.  They are here for a few days and then, except for the casings of their dead they disappear.  During the evening calm they swarm about 15 to 25 feet off the ground in and around the trees that line our lakeside creating a kind of hum that is only broken by the sound of a fish rising to feast upon the unwary insect that happens to get to close to the surface of the water.  Aside from having them settle on our heads and shoulders as we sit on the deck, it is quite a marvelous spectacle.

We are sitting on our side deck enjoying a hot cup of coffee and the sun as it rises in the east.  There is a robin hopping around on the roof of our neighbor`s home chasing the insects.  Now I don’t find that particularly unusual except for this one bird.  He/she is not satisfied with catching one or two of the insects but as many as possible.  In fact the robin`s beak is so full that it has started to drop more than it is able to catch. (The insects at this point are stationary targets).  This has been going on for about five minutes and the bird appears neither undaunted nor it`s appetite filled.  I wonder how long this particular robin will continue this quest.

As I observe this robin, I would like to ask it the question,  “how much is enough?”  The robin makes me wonder what its priorities are.  Is it attempting to carry as many mayflies to it`s young as possible or is it just indulging itself? 

How much is enough?  Now that is the question that begs answering by each one of us.  How do we determine when our cup is full?  How do we know when we have put forth enough effort and it is time to move on?  Each of us has established our own internal criteria of satisfaction and/or frustration. 


  • How much is enough for you?
  1. When you’re asked to serve on a committee or be involved with another organization how often do you say “no”?  Where do you place your priorities? Is it satisfying your own self-esteem, spending time with your family or having free time to take care of yourself physically?
  2. When your children have asked the same question for the 12th time, do you listen to the 13th, 14th and so forth?  Do you lose your temper and admonish the child? How much time is necessary to meld a parent/child relationship that will last for a lifetime?  When was the last time you told a child you were proud of them?
  3. Your spouse has committed the same horrendous mistake.  Do you lose your temper?  How many times can you say, “I love you and I care about you” to your primary relationship?  Tell your spouse you care!
  4. How many times do you need to hear you are appreciated?  How many times do you need to hear you are needed and loved?  When was the last time you told an employee you appreciated them? How often do you call a friend and tell them you are thankful for their friendship? 
  • It would sometimes appear that we proceed through our lives with a reckless abandon.  There will always be tomorrow; I’ll get around to it then.  I can handle one more thing and it will all work out.  We aren’t always sure when to stop or when to go just one more step.  Maybe the common barometer on determining how much is enough would be to examine “what is meaningful in our lives”?  Then make a decision.
  • I have this great hat I picked up a few years ago.  On the back it has “workaholic, 25hrs a day 8 days a week”.  Now I have to tell you, when I bought it I was proud of it and wore it like a badge.  But as I sit here and write this I wonder.  Hmmmm, maybe I need to have a talk with that robin.  I wonder how many of us can see our reflection in a bird.

Oh well, enough is enough!!!