“That’s an excellent question, seeing as how this is called the ‘Meaning bridge’.”
As they indulged Epic with the details of their journey, Milo sensed something unique and unusual about this bridge. But he couldn’t determine exactly what it was. Over lunch, Daisy told Epic the awful story about her brother and the cat. Epic listened attentively and it was only after she finished that he spoke.
“But your brother survived and wore his triumph as a badge of honour. Although you’re scared of cats, you’ve never met one. Was it so terrible?”
Daisy thought this over for a while, before admitting that in retrospect maybe she had turned it into a catastrophe that it really wasn’t. Curious about Epic’s perspective, Milo mentioned the dreadful dog-attack Grandma Tilly had suffered and how she had barely escaped by pretending to be dead. Epic started to laugh, much to Milo’s consternation. The little vole gravely asked Epic why he was laughing.
“Isn’t it funny!” Epic chuckled, “A squirrel playing possum? Did you know that possum means ‘I am able’ or ‘I can’ in Latin? That is ironic: a possum playing dead and not able!”
It had tickled Epic, but was rather lost on Milo and Daisy. He continued, his eyes twinkling.
“You said that after this incident, Grandma Tilly gained psychic and intuitive powers. Has she not gained great respect from other creatures because of this? Is she not provided for in her old age due to helping others? That seems like a pretty worthwhile life to me!”
Puzzled, Milo and Daisy broached the subject of Daisy’s ordeal in the woods, mentioning Doc and the Valley of Shadows.
“Don’t you think what happened to Daisy was terrible?” Milo asked, his eyes searching Epic’s face.
Epic offered a wry smile, “I realise Daisy felt really awful for a few days, but did that not cause you both to take much needed rest? You met the wonderful, wise old Doc and were uplifted by the group meeting! And then, probably the most important part of all, Daisy faced her greatest fears!”
Epic seemed to have a different perspective for every story they told him. Epic realised that we take the events and circumstances of our lives as fact. But really for us to experience them, we have to give them meaning.
We always have a choice as to the meaning we give these events.
‘It's not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.’ Epictetus