Here is a picture of Chester Bennington – lead singer for the band Linkin Park. This was taken on stage, at a show in Indianapolis recently. For anyone who knows anything about Chester, they know he’s full of energy. He’s like the hamster on the wheel, or the three-year-old who’s had too much sugar – there’s no slowing him down when he’s on stage. Linkin Park shows are packed with emotion and energy, strongly propelled by Mr. Bennington.
Chester, however, and, maybe more appropriately, ironically, is no stranger to accidents. Broken bones, and open wounds – its par for the course for Mr. Bennington. But, in this case, when I saw and heard that Chester had broken his ankle, I didn’t have the knee-jerk reaction of, “Oh, he’s broken something else. Poor guy.” No, this time, my reaction was one of respect, and a reflection over what it means to be dedicated. This isn’t the first time Chester has played a show with a broken limb. A few years back, he broke his wrist while on stage, yet continued on, only to go to the emergency room after. This man is dedicated, and looking at photos and reading reports about his latest testament to this, I felt compelled to write about it.
So often I find an excuse to wiggle out of my responsibilities. Be they work duties, or just needing to vacuum the living room on my day off, it can be tempting to make an excuse or find a reason why I can’t complete task A, B, or C. I know one of my favorite rationalizations is, “I’m too busy” or “I’ve been working so much, I deserve some down time.” And so begins my excuses. Most of the time, I believe it. I convince myself that yes, I am too busy. Or that working hard over the past week entitles me to be completely slack about the housework or my writing. What starts off as a simple excuse or product of being tired, quickly becomes laziness.
Laziness. It’s the demon that lurks behind our minds and pounces on us at our weakest moments. It feeds reasons and excuses into our ears, and sadly, sometimes it convinces us. I know I allow it to happen way too often.
But then the voices of Progress, Responsibility, and Dedication throw in their two cents. They don’t whisper or scheme like Laziness. They yell. They slap me over the head and bring me to my senses. That moment of, “What am I doing?” hits, and from there I feel refreshed – ready to start over again.
(Chester on stage in his cast)
Now, to my list of motivators and inspirations, I will be adding Chester Bennington. I already admire him for his amazing singing voice and creative spirit, but it is his dedication that I will be musing from today, and for many days to come. Such dedication is a rarity in our world, and I don’t desire to follow the crowd on that front. I want to be the minority. I want to be the kind of person who has the dedication to play the show, even with a broken ankle.