I'm lying awake, once again, with sleep no where close to being within my reach. I've tried counting sheep, counting fish, counting lightning bugs, and counting Diet Coke cans and nothing puts me into a slumbering dream state. I have no magic pills that make my mind stop thinking, and no magic wand to take away the hamster that is surely running a treadmill through my brain. So I write.
Sometimes I wonder how people cannot see themselves the same way I see them. Like the kind lady I think is so beautiful, and she only sees the age of life etched deeply on her face. Like the self-absorbed man who is drowning in his own pool of depression, yet says he is perfect in every way. Like the self-righteous church goer, who has forgotten why they were saved. Like the buffoon who makes a mockery of anyone he disagrees with, yet is crying inside from his own pain.
If life were so simple that we could all wear a mask and no one would be the wiser. Along with fake news and fake smiles, we would have fake faces to match our moods of the moment. We could skid through life on the slippery ice of our frozen personalities. We could hide behind our condemnations and judgements and change the world just by pointing our fingers. That would solve everything, wouldn't it? But what about faith, hope, and love, and the greatest of these being love? Where would those come in?
It is tiring to listen to the echoes of voices that say nothing. Those echoes are everywhere… on the news, in classrooms, on the streets, at the supermarket, in the church. Sometimes they are difficult to tune out because of the shrill loudness and number of them. But by golly, I'm determined to find the volume control!
Trying to stay positive amongst the deafening roar of naysayers and hissy fitters is certainly a challenge. It has driven me to my knees in desperation on more than one occasion. Tears have been shed in infinite numbers during wee hours of the night, and with embarrassment in the light of day. Some say I am much too sensitive. I say they are much too harsh. Some say I'm a wimp. I say the cruel thrive on bullying the wimps of the world. Regardless, I am who I am and I cannot be who they want me to be. If I weren't sensitive, I would be like them, and I do not want to be them. I am me.
I made the mistake of glancing at the news headlines today. There is so much sadness, anger, blame, hate, fear, rebellion, and cruelty. So I found the OFF switch, and then there was no volume. They no longer existed for me.
Perhaps the trick to living happily is to make the OFF switch a continuous thing. Turn OFF the echoes of negativity swirling around life. I'm finding it easier said than done, though. There's still a part of me that wants to save the world from self-destruction. I want to make kindness a type of virus everyone wants to catch. And I want smiles to become the greatest sport every played in competitions. It's just hard finding that OFF switch sometimes.
I will keep trying to lower the volume of the mindless echoes. Every once in a while, I might give a big ol' yodel and listen for its echo to get back to me. Wouldn't that be fun!
Take care of you.