**Warning** This may not be PG. This may not be PC. This may cause me to lose readers, gain readers, or cause nothing at all. This is what I've been talking about- the start of something different.
I'm sitting here with a glass of wine (**gasp**, she drinks!!) contemplating things that you can't even imagine, Internet. The carpets are shampooed, the kids are fed and bathed, the cats are sleeping, playing... you get the drift. My shit is together, right now. And yet... it isn't.
I've been thinking a lot about compassion, tolerance, acceptance, etc., the last few weeks. As the parent of a child with special needs (for you newbies, my 7 year old son has autism, and Early Onset Bipolar Disorder) you come across a LOT of ignorance, intolerance and outright cruelty. It's almost expected with other kids- kids can be mean, especially when another child is different. When it's NOT a kid is when I have a problem. Ignorance breeds ignorance, and unfortunately, there is a lot of that where we are. Blame lack of education (look it up), misinformation (ask me) or fear (it's not contagious, asshole)- but it's still wrong. My son has been called "a crazy", "goofy", "dippy" and more words that I can't even bear to put down here. By adults. That have children. Who live in my neighborhood. Where is the compassion?
I have a friend who was in a severe car accident on her way to work as a nurse in an assisted living facility. There was over $10,000 worth of damage to her vehicle (she was hit by a large truck). She was treated for cervical strain, given medications and follow up visits, and could barely move her neck arms or back for a week. She was fired for missing work- on the day of the accident. The company is now fighting unemployment. After firing her, causing her to lose her insurance and adding stress to an already devastating situation. She is a single woman raising a toddler. Who does such a thing? Where is the compassion?
When did we stop thinking outside ourselves? When did it become so "me, me MEEEE" that it's impossible to look at another human being-even a stranger- and realize that unless we live in their homes, walk in their shoes, and deal with their issues every single day, we have no idea what we're talking about, or doing, when we point our self righteous fingers and call ourselves "better"? No one is better. No one. We all got here the same way, and we will all make the same exit. Who we are inside is what counts-that's where your beauty lies- and I've seen a lot of ugly people lately, when it comes to having the heart to take a minute and just be kind. Or decent. Or even humane.
I'm not innocent here, either. I've been judgmental, I've been hateful... we all are at times. We're human. But it astounds me the lack of genuine compassion that there is anymore. We're so busy, so focused on ourselves that we don't look left or right to lend even a smile when someone is down. And that Internet? Sucks.
That sort of thinking leads me down some roads I didn't plan on taking. Confused? Join the club. I want to make a difference, I want to see change... and those things start at home. I'm getting my house in order, taking stock of choices, chances and changes. Some need to be made. Not on a whim, not for a minute... some need to be made. Starting with me. I need to look outside myself, my fears, wants, needs... some things cannot be about me. No matter how I want them to, they just can't.
I want my kids to be compassionate, respectful, and open to everything. I want them to see the world as an adventure- I want them to be excited to learn new things, meet new people, and to see "different" as something special. I want them to accept responsibillity for their actions, and to realize they can't conrtol anything but themselves. I don't want them to see labels, ever. I don't want them believing for a second that they're better than anyone- or that someone is strange because of belief, race, or who they love. Acceptance. We really are one world... why can't we teach our kids that? Different makes it interesting.
I know. A lot of rambling thoughts that may not really mesh, but they do, for me. And I hope in some ways they do for you. Who are we to say anything about anyone else? We all have our skeletons, our vices, and our pasts. Today. Today is what matters. We can't change what has been, but it's on us what will be.
Now, the question is- which way do you want to go?