It has been too much tragedy & two weeks since my last confession.
Please follow me to the confessional....
Where do you start when you don't know what to say? What do you say when basically anything said is not adequate? It's especially hard to think about yourself at a time like this. To think about what your last two weeks have been like. What has gone wrong or what has gone right.
I didn't personally know any who died in the Orlando shooting. At lease I don't believe I did. But everyone whose life was snuffed out, every person who was wounded by bullets, and everyone across this country whose heart was wounded by loss from the mass shooting has no doubt been profoundly impacted by the events. Indeed this nation grieves. We grieve once again for the senseless loss of lives by weapons that have no place in a civil society aside from the military.
The one thing I try to think about as I reflect upon the past two weeks is love. Who have I shown love to? What stranger have I smiled at? What doors have I held open? Who have I gone out of my way to help?
I also feel compelled to think about the exact opposite of love... hate. Have I really truly hated anyone? Sadly, the answer to this is honestly yes. I don't want to hate someone. I can rationalize perhaps why they may be unworthy of love. But hate, hate is a powerful poison. The funny thing (which is not really funny at all) is that most people that I hate are so remote that they don't really know who I am, much less that I actually hate them. And clearly one in particular, really exhibits by action a good deal of hate by their own right.
I suppose it is easy to rationalize that because one person does hateful things that it is justifiable to hate them back. It is truly easy to see that hate begets hate.
As much as I have decided I need to work on saying things that exemplify hate (and I have been guilty of this) I have also thought that for those out there that fall into that void somewhere between the two extremes, I need to be more open to just being a person who can share a smile, extend a greeting. Look for loving acts of kindness without regard for who these people are.
Life is short. We don't generally know expiration date. Our examples of kindness may be the last thing someone recalls.
I confess that there are things we as citizens can do about the issues of gun violence. And these are things that we should do.This is a fight we all need to wage for the sake of our future, our children and grandchildren. I have done some of these things in the past and I will continue.
I confess that I see that we all need more kindness. Everywhere! Kindness at home, at school, at work, on the street corner, while driving, I confess that I have a role to play in introducing more kindness to others.
I confess that these past two weeks I've had some positive things happen. There is the Paul Simon Concert at Starlight, and the Poem of mine appearing in The Best of Boston Literary Magazine, but it's just hard to focus on anything else.
Peace, Love, and Kindness