There’s a saying in Haiti: Deye mon gen mon. It’s stuck with me since I heard it in a college class long ago. It means “Behind the mountain there’s another mountain.”
I’ve been thinking about that, Deye mon gen mon, throughout my Growing Gratitude journey. I’ve been thinking about that phrase’s simplicity, about its richness. Whether the phrase is optimistic or fatalistic depends on your perspective. Is it a lamentation of a life of endless obstacles or a celebration of an infinite number of breathtaking views?
The startup journey is much like that. For someone like me who has to learn just about everything from scratch, the mountains are many, and they are the kind where you think you’ve reached the peak only to find the real summit is still a ways to go. It’s exhausting. The air is thin. My pack is heavy. But I’m still on the move. There are some tourists speaking another language who are chatting noisily as they sprint up the mountain. I struggle to catch my breath at half their pace. But I’m still on the move.
I like looking back and remembering when Growing Gratitude was just a smudge of an idea, little more than a run-on thought which could have been lost like so many others between the chain of activities that made up my life then. It held on though. And here we are.
Today, after taking the kids to a play date where they’ll make a holiday craft then destroy a friend’s house with their pint-sized cohorts for an hour or two, I’m going to buy a bottle of champagne. Then home for lunch and nap time (not for me, of course!). Then to see Nick and Michael, my PixelNation coding superheroes. Today is THE DAY that we submit the Growing Gratitude app to the App Store for review. And while a bigger picture view of this moment might prevent me from seeing the submission as reaching a climax (being accepted into the App Store on our first try would be too easy, right?), I have to reject that view.
I’ve been on the move, head down, trying to keep my breathing steady by meditating on the ground beneath me. I’ve been focusing on the inhale and exhale, the gravelly, sliding crunch of each footfall, and it’s gotten me this far. Today’s a day to look up and out, across and beyond. It’s a view that will hold many mountains, no doubt.
Deye mon gen mon, and – at least for the moment – the view is magnificent.