Last week I listened to MOTS complain for four straight days about overcast skies and overgrown grass. "It's just rain," I thought to myself. This week the cooler temperatures and precipitation made their way into the District, and I didn't mind. Not one bit. I love the rain. The sound it makes on the window as I fall asleep. The way it quenches nature's thirst. The need it causes for a few extra accessories. I've also known the rain to bring magic.
Aneesh Chaganty's commencement speech left me immensely inspired, but it also made my mind race. It took the chaos of wind and rain outside to bring order to all the thoughts swirling inside. As downspouts captured the deluge of water, I finally captured the words for "thieves." The rain allowed for reflection, focus, and then magic as a simple re-tweet spiraled into a compliment and memory I will never forget.
Rain is so often cast in a negative light, but maybe this weather pattern deserves a new place in our lives. I will spare you from another cliché explanation of how life's difficulties parallel the rainy days, and how there are better ones ahead. I skip these words because they only provide temporary solutions. Instead, I will flip the coin. Let's view life from the eyes of a pluviophile, someone who loves the rain.
Living two steps ahead of everyone else, they see the beauty in a downpour. If we follow the rules of convention that dictate sunshine embodies the best days and rain represents our struggles, it's easy to see why pluviophiles have an advantage. Finding joy in what most would rather not deal with gives them an opportunity to bypass all the negative thoughts associated with facing a challenge. That is powerful. All the energy we would consume on negativity, they use to begin moving forward. Pluviophiles don't need to waste time waiting for a sunnier day, they know how to find contentment in the rain.
From this side of the coin, stormy weather is not seen as a part of life we need to endure. It's just simply another day. A different type of day, with a different purpose. But a day nonetheless. Labeling one better than the other is just a foolish game. We tell ourselves the rainy days are what make the sunny ones so much better. But what if we stopped huddling under the umbrella, and just enjoyed today. Rain or shine. For today.
Too much sun makes a desert, and too much rain creates a flood. Life is about embracing the balance, not a particular type of day. Transforming our outlook will make life's obstacles a reason to thrive, not something to survive. Roger Miller's words note the difference in these two mindsets, "Some people walk in the rain, others just get wet." Whether it's a power walk or casual stroll, let's make ourselves a promise: we will no longer get soaked.
Life as a pluviophile. A lover of rain. Not caring if the sun comes out tomorrow, because we know how to find magic in today.
Sidenote: SCOPES is about sharing perspectives, and I can't wait for all of you to read Aneesh's brilliant words in full. Once his speech is published online, I will be sure to share it. I realized after the fact, that "thieves" was a major tease. I can't wait for the whole story to hit home for you like it did for me. Good things are worth waiting for...in the meantime you can watch some of his other masterpieces here. Things are never the same after it rains, I hope you enjoy seeing commas and raindrops in a whole new way. Happy SCOPESing in ☔️or ☀️.