Monday, July 23, 2018

But that's just my opinion

I have an opinion about a lot of things, just like anyone else. I have an opinion about life, death, Jesus, my home, math, love, politics, immunizations, abortion, parenting, love, TV, tattoos, hairstyles, people, third-world countries, the homeless, get the point. Over the years my opinion has changed as i learn more, some have completely changed, others maybe only a little. And i have learned that if you really want to know how i feel about the above, and so much more, you should come over to my house or invite me to yours, or hey, we can even meet for coffee or tea. Because to really know how i feel (or anyone else for that matter) cannot be expressed nor understood through ANY form of social media let alone commenting on someone else’s opinion. 

One more thing, if we all put this into practice, maybe we would understand how human we all are, how kind we all can be, and stop debating over every.tiny.detail. But thats just my opinion...

Friday, May 11, 2018

Suicide, semicolons, and living

Back in junior high, I had my best friend approach me at my locker. She handed me her razor blade that she was going to use to slit her wrist. She stopped because she heard my voice tell her not to. About 25 years ago, a young lady came to my door with her wrists slit, fortunately not deep enough to end her life, but it was still attempted. Throughout my years, I have heard stories of people taking their life. I also had two of my kids commit suicide, although not biological, it still hurts to know they were in so much pain that they didn't believe there was any other way. I wasn't there for them when they did it. Two other kids spoke of suicide often, one even needed to go to the hospital because he couldn't shake his feelings, he was desperate.

Awhile back, I witnessed a man so desperate, he climbed onto an overpass and was going to jump. I saw him holding on. Then, I saw him jump. I later leaned that he actually was jumping to a police officer who was able to help him down and jump to a bus.  But still why didn't he believe there was more to life? Recently, a friend of mine made comments about just wanting it to be over, that she can't go on, and isn't worth the air she breaths. She was desperate. She felt there was nothing left. I cannot even begin to understand how someone can believe suicide is the only option. 

And then I read this - "I never really wanted to die, I just wanted someone to see how much of a struggle it was for me to live."  And I've also learned about the semicolon in a whole new way - "a semicolon is used when an author could've chosen to end their sentence, but chose not to. The author is you and the sentence is your life." Your story is NOT ever. Your life matters. You are seen!

I can't stop thinking about the point of the first quote "I just wanted someone to know my struggle to live." How do I help people live? How do we help people understand there really is a reason to keep going? How can I lesson their struggle? Because in the middle of the mess, there's not much that can be said to change their mind. I know I'm not the answer. I know I can't save them, BUT can't I help? There has to be something...

Saturday, April 21, 2018

How Are You?

How are you? I’m good, how are you? I’m fine.

How are you? My 17 year old daughter ran away.

How are you? My friends’ 15 year old daughter is pregnant.

How are you? I’m doing OK.

How are you? I'm not really sure.

How are you? Eh, I’m alright.

How are you? My husband was just diagnosed with cancer.

And life moves on, like the answers were just left there.

We ask this question all the time, more often than not, the response is “I’m good” or “I’m fine.” Lately I’ve noticed some people are sharing more, but in those responses, there’s hardly ever time to get past the response. Does that make sense? I just mean, we ask the question, how are you, but rarely do we listen to the answer. And even when we get more than the robot response of I’m good, we may say I’m sorry, but then we move past it...because life doesn’t pause and must keep going.

But are we really saying something else? Are we saying “hey, i really want to know how you are, but I don’t have time for your answer.” Or worse, “i’m only asking because it's the “polite” thing to do.”

Today I saw someone I haven’t seen in awhile. His response was “Eh, I’m alright.” But he was on the phone, so I couldn’t get more details. Something about his face said there was more, but there was no time. Is this really what we’ve come to? We are so busy today, and in such a hurry. But I can’t help to think, what if we really made the time to hear the answer, to validate people’s life, to respond in such a way, others will know they were heard.

How are you?