...when we forgets me.
I was thinking earlier this week--or rather, last week--that we are one. What I meant by that is that my husband and I are one. But really, because of everything that’s has happened recently—the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida (an area of the country I was not unfamiliar with) –I feel more than ever the importance of our being one as a species. It’s ridiculous that we cannot see that.
We pick each other apart to make things interesting, or because we’re scared and don’t know who to blame or what to do or where to turn. We fail to realize that we're all the same. Humans differ superficially but we all need food, we all create waste, we all feel a need/pull/obligation towards family. We should protect each other. See one another as we are--copies, if distant, of each other. We know how kindness feels, how pain feels, how shame feels.
Upside-down we go -- from We to Me we go. Society splits. Tribes split. Cities. Boundaries. Limits. Borders. War. Fear. We create stories because we’re afraid. We paint the other as something foreign. We forgets me.
I am outraged and deeply saddened by this whole thing, because I’m human, but as the parent of a kid in school, I am terrified. This happens everywhere. It can happen anywhere. Those kids thought they were safe. Their parents, grandparents, siblings, friends thought they were safe. It’s certainly true that this life is finite, and we can go at any time and for any reason, but why must we help it along in this way? It’s one thing to live a life of excess, taking too many risks with your health--having fun and hurting only yourself along the way--but to create and distribute life ending machines--guns--for what? Our kids are being massacred.
Maybe this is a necessity, and merely a single domino in the mosaic of falling dominoes that is existence, tumbling forward to propel actions and outcomes that we cannot yet conceive of. But maybe the action is that we’re stubborn as shit and can’t seem to give up our guns unless a fuck ton of people die.
We are being shaken by the shoulders and asked to witness something--to stay awake to something--to give voice to something.
Here’s the thing: we are one. We need to act as one, or we will all suffer.
It feels like all we do is push products. Meaningless trifles and things that merely clutter our planet and don’t seem to fill the void within us. We’re looking for an external source of satisfaction, when what we should be doing is exploring ourselves. Getting to know one another and the person inside -- the soul -- the feeling part of us that is all nerve-endings filled with blind instinct, encased in muscles and skin. We feel that prickly, pulsating sensation of warmth that dances in our chest, but it’s not until we connect the thought we’ve had at the instance of said feeling, that we can discern which emotion it’s connected to. We were amid potential danger--experiencing fear; we were encountering a love interest--experiencing lust.
If we explored our own emotions and the triggers within us, we would be better able to understand ourselves, and thus each other. But instead we busy ourselves with things because they make us feel good, and judge others on the way they choose to feel good, not realizing that we’re only judging ourselves. Dopamine junkies, the lot of us. Going from stress-high to stress-high. Living for the highs and lows of the 9-5. Did you get your assignment done in time for deadline? Did you make the sales goal? Did you make that presentation? Even the most mundane of it has an element of excitement that we fail to notice, but we’re so focused on what we’re doing--running the rat race; planning for a potential future we have no real control over. We’re blind to the life we should be living. Rewarding ourselves--for the failed potential and grinding it out for another man’s bottom line--with pints of ice cream, sex, gambling, alcohol, drugs. Shaving years off our life, planning for a future we don’t even know will come. Why do we do it? Because that’s how it’s done? Do you know who did it that way? People just like you. People that weren’t sure if what they were doing was right. They did it that way because that’s what they knew at the time, or that’s what worked for them. But we know better now, don’t we?
We need better now.
Stop for a moment and look at what you’re holding onto. Does it really matter in the end?
It’s sad when you think about how silly this all is. A simple miscommunication. Like in the recent Black Panther -- family raised apart that didn’t know any better -- fighting the same battle from different sides. It’s silly.