Have you ever heard a song, seen a movie, or read a book that defined your current circumstances?  Whenever this happens to one of us, it feels like someone else understands.  As if this artifact or medium of expression was magnetically drawn to your mood in an awe-inspiring attempt to relieve you of your confusion – an attempt to metaphorically put purpose to your pain. Today, that happened to me.
I have been in the midst of a presidential upheaval of emotion. The storms of life have been handing me striking blows of chaos, deterrents and setbacks.  When I say “storm,” I mean it in every sense of the word.  I feel as if I am on a boat, being tossed around, just trying to hold the wheel and praying for a rainbow.  This is not my usual state of being, and I have survived past shake ups, but for the present time, this is my reality.
Today, I happened to be listening to one of those “Home Improvement” shows on the radio.  The program is usually bombarded with questions involving foundation renewal, gutter cleaning and the rewiring of electricity, but for some reason, today was different. While I didn’t turn on the show early enough to hear the question, I did catch a candid commentary on the purification of gold. 
The process goes as such ... When one is purifying gold ore, chemicals are mixed in to filter the gold from the rest of the rock. Once that is done, the gold is heated to sterilize it from all impurities, and until that happens, you never let it cool.
For some reason, I thought about my life when I heard this process. Becoming an adult is tedious but easy, but growing up is painful. It is by age that one is counted as an adult, but it is by the stripping away of child-like behavior that one is truly “grown.”
I realize that my biggest moments of growth have come at the end of painful situations, when the “heat” of life is blazing hot. I hate learning from experience, because it usually involves making a mistake, but most of the lessons that stick with a person throughout life are learned by experience.
I urge anybody who is going through a life crisis to change their perspective about why this is happening. You can keep an attitude of martyrdom and whine “woe is me,” or you can look at the issue and realize this is your Higher Power using heat to purify your iniquities and  strengthen your resilience, molding you into the person you are meant to be on this earth.
Most important of all, keep in mind that “this too, shall pass” and when the dark clouds leave and the sky clears, you will be one step closer to a real grown-up, no matter what your age. 

Chris “Ace Nova” Fleming is a 20-something residing in the Highlands-Douglass neighborhood – a young professional moonlighting as your neighborhood blogger. Check out or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with feedback.