Do you ever feel like you're carrying around some hidden baggage? I recently took a trip through an airport security checkpoint in Dallas. In the wake of the underwear bomber (is there a more dubious distinction?), airport security is in full on lock down mode, and those of us who've had to travel since Christmas day have encountered a whole new level of scrutiny. In my case, I stepped to the checkpoint confident that my luggage would make a non-stop trip through the x-ray machine, and assured that I would shoe-lessly and belt-lessly breeze through the metal detector without incident. I laid my laptop, car keys, coat, cell phone, shoes and belt in their own generic grey bins, and slid them onto the conveyor belt like groceries at a check out lane. What could go wrong?
Before I left home, I grabbed a small carry-on bag from the hall closet and packed it myself (without the aid of any terrorist-types), so I knew there was nothing in there that could be fashioned into a makeshift weapon. Imagine my surprise when one of the security guards stopped me and exclaimed, "You know you have a multi-tool with a blade in your bag, right?" "No!" I surprisingly snapped back, "I had no idea." Apparently one of my kids stuffed this threatening device into my suitcase for some unknown reason. It cost me nearly 20 minutes at the security station just to explain to homeland security that I really wasn't planning on charging the cockpit with a leatherman. Finally, after confiscating the multi-tool that I never knew I even owned, they sent me on my way.
It was a not so subtle reminder that we sometimes carry harmful things around with us, like so much airport baggage, while not even knowing they are there. This is why I think counseling is good for just about anyone. Counselors are sort of like airport security check points. They reveal the things we carry around inside of us that could be potentially harmful to us, sometimes without our knowledge. Just something to think about.