We use these inner calendars as a measurement of the worthiness of life. Though not visible markers of time, they hold real events. When our tragedies overlap, we can lose balance and with it, our sense of perspective. It is then that we say things, harsh things, about ourselves or others. Hurt becomes all that we know, and we lash out. We want others to feel our pain.
If laughter fills the months of our other calendar, we live unaware of its shadow. We see but don’t see the suffering around us. We live oblivious to pain and imagine joy is our right. Because of this, we are even more upset when hardship comes our way. We question why me.
My calendar of the last twelve months is very full. Medical challenges and my mom’s passing top the list, but there were other difficulties as well. If it weren’t for my friend Joyce, I might have been overwhelmed.
Joyce is wheelchair-bound. Guillain-Barre changed her life overnight. Her courage and determination help others summon the same. Though I don’t have a fraction of her strength, her example provides a direction for me. She chooses to see beauty rather than brokenness, and irrespective of the difficulty, she sees a gift.
We are surrounded by hurting people. The impatient clerk at the grocery store, the rude driver on the freeway, the yelling couple down the street. We are not alone, but alone we stand unless we reach. This song from R.E.M. hit home for me; perhaps it will for you as well. ♥