Here’s another lesson from my adventure in tying my own tzitzit for the 30-Day Tzitzit Challenge. First, I wish I had used a blue thread in my fringes just so I could keep up with which thread was which. I’m not sure the techelit (the blue thread in some tzitzit) is supposed to be the long thread that wraps around the rest of the fringes, but that would seem to be a wise choice.
Second, I’m glad I had not used a blue thread in my fringes — at least for the longest thread — because I was struck by the way the longest thread shrinks in length as you reach the end of the wrapping and tying process. The longest thread is long because it’s going to be manipulated in such a way that it will be used up faster as you go along — this happens in a lot of knotting processes, but we don’t always notice it. If one thread does all the twisting and wrapping and such, it will, at some point, run out of length.
Just like a human being: Even the strongest people in our lives can be ‘used up’ if we always rely on them to carry the burden of the hardest jobs. Everyone needs help; everyone needs cooperation; and everyone needs encouragement. Otherwise, they will soon become the shortest string, or, worse, disappear into the knots and wraps without you ever noticing.
I hope I remember this as I make demands on the leaders in my life, on the people who work for my well-being, and on the people who care for me. Sometimes we can share the burden, but sometimes the burden can’t be shared; sometimes we can ease up on our demands, but sometimes the burden can’t be lightened; sometimes we can simply give others the benefit of believing they are doing as much as they can in the time they have with the resources available — and there is no ‘but’ for this one.