Great picture, isn't it? I found it at "How Stuff Works." The caption cracked me up. It says, " The whitewater moments in life are the ones that might get you wet, or they might injure you in a serious way, or they might even kill you. That's the thing about the whitewater moments - you never know what new reality will be yours once the moment has passed.
It is not possible to avoid whitewater if you want a real life. The river gets you from one part of your life to the next, and sometimes it's rocky. Sometimes it's dangerous - or painful - or it takes all of your concentration and you can't pay attention to anyone else for a few seconds. Sometimes you're 21, getting ready to go back to school, concerned about paying your rent, and you suddenly need all four of your wisdom teeth removed at once. That's when the life jacket is made of a mom and some homeopathic remedies and a place to sleep where you don't have to worry about anything ... but the life jacket doesn't do any of your work for you. You still have to keep your head and concentrate and pay attention and move on down the river.
Lots of things are like that. When life brings you whitewater, it's good to be wearing a life jacket - just in case. It won't keep you dry, but if you're wearing one, you probably won't drown.