What you will find below I started over 2 weeks ago. I am still struggling to find my words, but what happened to me today absolutely shattered me and has made my internal rage fire out of control.
Most people are unaware that Mike has had some recent health issues and out of respect for his privacy I will fore go the details and just say that we were back to Cleveland only this time it was his turn. On our trip home we stopped in Terre Haute at the hotel we like downtown. We slept well and woke up late! As we left the parking lot on the one way street we approached one of the pretty little parks you find there scattered throughout downtown. The fog had settled heavy this morning and the air was thick. I looked over while we were at the stop light and the first thing I see is one of the two metal benches with blankets and on top is a white, ruffled bedspread that you might use in a little girls room and as I looked at the other bench a momma and her two children sitting there. It was clear to us that they had spent the night outside, within walking distance to Indiana State University. I screamed at Mike “Turn around!! Turn around! Oh my Lord, Mike! Two children!” I was on the phone FaceTime with my daughter and I showed her and tears ran down our faces. Mike was clearly shaken as well. We went around the block to give her some help. It was clear she was no junkie, those children were doing as kids do and smiling when they saw a kind face smiling back at them. She held her head down and all I could say was stay safe. This is AMERICA. PRO LIFE is taking care of all life, not only the unborn. Not one child should be hungry in this country of excess wealth and privilege. Not one child should sleep in fear on a park bench. I don’t know her story, but I know that she was afraid, grateful, tired, worn down, unsure, protective and lost. It’s not a judgement as to how she got to the park with two littles, 8 or so and maybe 4 or 5; it is a call from me to you to implore you to really look at what is going on in this country right under your nose. Not pandemics, not politics, but the people who aren’t as fortunate. No excuses. This is unconscionable and treating people with dignity and empathy is the call.
After we left I called the Pastor at the local Trinity Lutheran LCMS and he was heading out to find her. I thanked him and I prayed that the right person will find her. That’s what I could do. That is why I feel like my blog from a couple weeks ago is relative to this. It all stems from kindness. We are not separate from each other. We are one people. When one is hurting I hurt. We hurt. We should hurt. We should imagine ourselves as children on a park bench in the fog.
Here begins my attempt at bringing thoughts together. I want to curl up in a ball and cry. Then I need to get to work changing the things I can. if I have typos please ignore. I’m writing in the car on a phone. It is what it is.
My problems pale by comparison. No pity necessary.
I was talking to my friend, Mary, yesterday and I mentioned to her that I am unable to write. I feel like the temperature of this country has given me my own virus and has literally stolen my muse. I struggle with depression and with finding joy. I haven’t had this problem for years, it seems, but now it is a daily struggle. This recent cold snap reminded me that winter is around the corner waiting to engulf and punish me for my days worshiping the sun and heat. The cold and dark will creep in and steal what is left and shoot me into the dark half of the year with the unwillingness to cooperate that would rival any screaming 3 year old. I struggle. I am struggling. I look for ways to feel better only to be met with the all too familiar words “It is your journey and it is what it is”. I know this. I know that I could go a hundred different places and get a hundred different answers, so here I am.
I am not alone in this journey. I know many people who feel just like I do. It isn’t a case, however, of “misery loves company”, it is a case of “Why can’t this change?” When did it happen? Why did it happen? How can we withstand crisis when it comes down to people hating each other? I sent statements out on September 2nd. It was exactly one week later when I receive nasty notes from someone I used to think quite highly of. Used to, being the operative words. He was a huge disappointment and the main reason he was angry wasn’t with my bill, it was the fact that I used orange paper for statements. He says he will never do business with me because he hates my statements, to which I say “Pay for your stuff when you get it and me extending you credit won’t piss you off!” I am so over people I could puke. Quite frankly I don’t want his business, because with him comes a long line of sarcastic insults and anger. No thank you. There is no amount of money worth any kind of abuse. If I won’t take that from people I love, why would I take it from him? I am sure that my Grandfather is rolling over with my dispute of “the customer is always right” mantra that he used. They aren’t always right. I am not always right. Since this pandemic I am less tolerant of taking peoples garbage. I think if I have realized one thing is that many people are unhappy and are internally mean. Yep. I think that they want to hurt others so they feel better and this gives them the right to say anything. This is true in my own life; people who I loved are not the same people and I don’t choose to accept their new found mouths, nor will I beg for relationships that they don’t want. Think it. Don’t say it.
This sounds so grumpy! I guess I am!! I keep thinking that there is something more to this! I have a birthday in 2 days, and that isn’t a reminder, and I don’t want to have one! 2020 can have my birthday too since it feels like it’s stolen a lot already. I will have one next year and I will enjoy next years 2021! This year can pass quietly into the shadows and I won’t recall anything about it and that will be fine!! I will close my eyes to the darkness of winter and the pain that comes with the dark half. Nothing good happens in the dark half. …. ….. ……thinking……….. That’s not entirely true, one of the greatest joys happened in the dark half of 2017, November 7th and the other happened in the dark half of 2019, October 21st!! Finn and Allie! Those are the beacons of hope in my world. They have the ability to change the world, right? Isn’t that what we want them to believe? That their voices will lead and make a difference? Yes!! My goal,before I die, is to teach them to speak kindness. Then I will consider my work done and the world can turn without me! Goals!!