I see it on social media a lot. A meme that goes something like, "You taught me everything except how to live without you, mom". I get the idea. I have lost my parents. My son has lost his father. There has been a lot of loss in my life. I miss them every day, but statements like that actually make of my father. Not in the way that you would expect. In fact, the opposite.
Gratitude goes a long way in life. It makes the difference between someone feeling as if life matters.. and feeling as if only privilege does. So I ask you to check your privilege.. and if you can volunteer at a local homeless shelter and see how they live.. and then travel to a developing country.. and see how the rest of the world lives.
Now I read this article about Sesame Street talking to millions of kids about their parents. Millions of kids whose mommies and daddies have to stay sober using nothing but will power. My son is not the only kid I know whose parent has died from the crisis.. my son is not the only kid I know that needed a monitor to make sure he was safe when his Da was using.
I can tell you that I have had a handful of significant deaths in my life, and I have reacted to them differently every time. Some of the differences are based on their relationship to me, some of them have been because of my age. Some of the differences are just because the more loss you have; the more you get used to it.
Then he asked me why I accepted his request after all of this time, and the truth is that I needed to. I needed to forgive him not for his sake but for my own. I needed to forgive myself for all the time I wasted being angry. I needed to talk to him again to see that he wasn't the devil, but just some guy with just as much damage and confusion in his life as we all have. I had to take my power back.
So as important as the afterlife is to most of us, the only life we actually have control over right now is the one that we are currently living. How do you want to spend your days? Do you want to do, see, and accomplish as much as you can? Do you want to love, learn, and experience all of the wonders that this life has? Or do you want to blame, ridicule, and waste the little time that you do have to be the person you always dreamed you could be?
ut what about all of those who are just hoping to get through the bitterly cold nights? The food pantries and soup kitchens don't just have "guests for the holiday". We all talk about the things we want to get and achieve, but what about the things that we want to give.