When I was very young, I remember asking my dad why we couldn't see the future. That wise kind man said "well, Patty" (I was Patty back then), "we can't know what's coming because it would be just too scary". Well isn't that a true story? At 7 or 8 years old I still held the blessed innocence of a child whose worst experience was a skinned knee. Sadly as the years go by we learn that life can be really really hard and that sometimes bad things happen to good people.
Oh boy - I don't mean to be all gloom and doom here! Last month I wrote about simple, random joys, and honestly these two topics will come together....just bear with me!
I had actually saved a draft of things that really ticked me off lately. One was the sometimes abhorrent behaviour of people on social media. I'm not super active and if I don't agree with something I just skip over it. Unfortunately some feel compelled to make their point. A couple of weeks back an acquaintance posted a pic of the Prince Harry book with the words "here goes". Simple, right? My oh my, the venom, hate, strong opinions and fighting that transpired in the literally hundreds of comments was shocking! No I didn't read them, just scrolled by -- because, really, who cares? The following day I happened upon a brief post by this same person saying she felt attacked, and she was! She hadn't said she liked or disliked the person or the book. Just that she was going to read it. I read a lot, and I happen to read a lot of books that take place during WWII. I'm just interested in some of the stories and the history. Please don't judge me! It does not mean I'm in favour of the war.
The quote, "when given the choice to be right or be kind, always choose kind" really resonates with me. As a person who likes to make her point, I learned and grew from that concept. Think - would you say these hateful, judgemental comments to anyone's face? No. Then why oh why is it okay to hide behind the not so anonymous veil of social media. My message -- Just play nice. Remember that there are so many other big things in this world to be angry and hateful about. Like war, disease, crime and bad people.
Well, that was a rant. Me thinks I needed a bit of a release. You may wonder what bee got into my bonnet*? If you know me personally, you know that I am lucky enough to be spending 3 months in sunny Mexico. And I'm generally a pretty positive person. And even better, our sweet grandson and his parents are with us for over 2 weeks. What a joy. But in the midst of this joy there is some heavy hard stuff going on. Perhaps that's why I was so annoyed by this bad, unnecessarily mean behaviour. I decided to read an article on how to deal with life's ups and downs and one of the suggestions is "write about it". So I did, and guess what? It is therapeutic. I really pounded the keyboard typing the paragraph above. The other tip that I zeroed in on is to remind yourself of what is truly important in life. Like this.
So going full circle, it seems this is the same message as the one I shared in January. Here you go in point form:
Ask yourself if it's important enough to bother with
Remember that we never really know what others are dealing with, so be kind
Again, ask yourself "would I say it to their face?" If the answer is no, let it go.
Find and treasure all the small joys in life
Hug your love ones
*My young proofreader (aka daughter-in-law) had never hear this 'bee in the bonnet' expression. She asked if it was "old timey". I guess that means I'm also old-timey! Pissed in my cornflakes would be more current.