The Game

Written by Hollye Dexter

Yesterday I was having breakfast with my friend Stacy, and we delved into the deep end of conversation as we girls do. We were talking about being on the receiving end of charity, and what an awkward and difficult place that is to be. She has been there too, and we both agreed, it feels so much better to be the one giving. Oh how I pine for my chance to be the “Secret Millionaire”.  And yet, as I mentioned in my previous post, receiving is a blow to the ego but a gift to our souls. When I’m in my ego, I don’t need anyone’s help. Oh no…I am superwoman! I’m someone who ran nonprofits for ten years, helping others to get on their feet. But my soul is now allowing other people to be there for me, to support me, to love me. I am open and vulnerable. (Yikes!)

Then Stacy said something that really got me thinking.

“Thank God those people (who I adopted Stitch from) were so fucked up that they put you in this position, and now you get to have this amazing experience.”


That ties in to a theory I have, which I shared with Stacy.  What if this whole thing called life is just The Game? Did you ever see that movie with Michael Douglas and Sean Penn?  If you haven’t – I HIGHLY recommend it. Here’s a synopsis: Michael Douglas is a money-grubbing heartless jerk of a guy, and his brother Sean Penn decides to help him “evolve”. Without Michael knowing it, Sean signs him up for this life- boot camp called The Game.

Soon Michael Douglas’ life is turned upside down by one trauma after the next. People are ransacking his house, he loses all his money, someone is trying to kill him…you name it. But it’s all a farce, being set up by this huge corporation called “The Game”, in an attempt to change him into a better man.

I was absolutely blown away by this film, and at the end I pondered…what if that’s all life is? What if these trials we go through are a game designed to push us toward our higher nature?

Imagine this: at the end as we arrive in afterlife, we see all the people who mentored us, guided us, and better yet, all the people who tortured us.
One by one they take their masks off and shake our hands.

“Hi. Remember me? I was your college professor who told you you’d never make it. Glad to see you did!”

“Nice to meet you. I was the boss who sexually harassed you so that you’d become a champion of women’s rights…”

And there are your parents, smiling, “We neglected you so that you’d grow up to be strong and independent! Gosh we’re proud of the job we did not raising you!”

Just imagine….

So back to Stacy’s comment, what a blessing it is that these “jerks” who abandoned and mistreated my dog have challenged me to see how much fight I’ve got, how I will stand up to injustice, and how much I can abandon my ego to let others support me.

I guess one day, in the hereafter, I’ll have to thank them.

But for now, the fight continues….

Can you think of people who’ve forced you into a “Game” you didn’t want to play, and did it make you a better person? I’d love to hear from you.

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  1. Anonymous

    Great post today Hollye. You are on a roll.

  2. amy ferris

    this is exactly (holy moly!) the same conversation that amy wise & i had yesterday. amazing.
    our challenges and heartache and struggles and pain and sorrow open our eyes wide open to the folks who love us, care for us, who want to help us – we also get to see who are true friends and family are. and the folks who jump in and offer a hand,a shoulder, a bed, money… it's extraordinary this thing called life. absolutely extraordinary.

  3. tamara

    I think that it is the grace of life and the universe that allows us to grow and mine these treasures from the abuses that come our way. It is grace that is the light that reveals true friendship and generosity, that allows us to find our empathy and strength and perseverance, to find the humility to accept help.

    I am so thankful for the grace that I have experienced in my life, and that I continue to experience. I am thankful for the grace that I see in your life, Hollye. Thank you for sharing it with me.

  4. Unknown

    As a woman in recovery from drug addiction and survival of abuse both physical and sexual believe that EVERYTHING I've been through has made me the woman I am today. Today my life would not be the same without all my past experience. It's through this path that I've learned principles I apply to my life that allow me to continue to look at ways to give instead of take. I GET TO participate in life today and what a gift that is. No matter what happens or what a victim I THINK I AM, there's a reason ( a lesson ) to be learned from that experience. Its your perception that maybe needs to change. Just saying

  5. iThunes

    I have a lot of people to thank! 🙂 In both cases… Love you, Hollye!

  6. Kim LePiane

    Seems we are all finding treasures where we previously found challenges and heart ache. The blessings keep coming! We are on the same wave length today. Maybe it's catching! I hope so! Thanks for sharing your heart.

  7. Cathy

    Like the Fool of tarot card fame I stepped (or was I pushed?) off a cliff at age 16, after I'd heard this, from my father, one too many times: 'if you live under my roof you follow my rules'. I finally took him at his word. Not any easy step (or was it a push?) and as you can see, I still wrestle with it…

  8. Deb

    I am struggling with grace today Hollye, the grace to accept the fact that someone I love has greatly disappointed me. part of the reason I am up at 3:56. This blog today helped me. thank you.


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