Some Assembly Required

Last week I purchased a patio set and was asked if I wanted the table, chairs, and loveseat assembled and delivered for (of course) a charge. Since they had no idea when the items would be delivered, I decided to get some help taking the boxes home and put the items together myself.

Almost everyone has done this, brought home an item with those dreaded words “some assembly required” written on the box. We unpack the parts and the instructions, along with the odd tools that are included, and try to make sense of the pictures and notations on the instructions. “Is this part DD or EE” we ask ourselves. “What do I insert first” we wonder as we gaze at diagrams written half way around the world. It seems we have to put something together incorrectly once, take it apart, and reassemble it to actually complete each project.

This is exactly what happened to me, but in the end, I was enjoying sitting on my new comfy furniture. And then I started to wonder what else in life should come with the label “some assembly required”? Clearly my college days required assembly, as did my career, and each life transition. Each and every relationship has demanded assembly, and often disassembly at least once along the journey. Perhaps we should embrace the process of assembly with strange tools and at times misleading or at least confusing instructions as a way of building lives we are proud of.

Because interestingly, we value those things we construct more than those things we pay someone else to assemble. There is meaning in the work, in the struggle, in the failure with leads to success, even with patio furniture. And we learn that building our life is a process that leads to a sense of pride and appreciation. We thrive and grow in the process. We learn that challenges are rewarding. And if nothing else we learn that odd tools really come in handy in life.

1 thought on “Some Assembly Required

  1. Interesting perspective, and spot on!

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