Another exercise in what makes humans truly special: our ability to dig deep into ourselves and find new ways to be absolutely and completely hideous.
It’s also the one year anniversary of the death of my second mom.
I’m feeling a tad melancholy and avoiding the bourbon tonight, because well, one should moderate to avoid finding the deeply hideous in ones own self.
This time the missing-and-of-course-dead child bumped into my volunteer world ever so briefly. It was a very odd, but welcome sense that maybe I could be a part of changing an outcome. We were not. The die was cast.
As all missing-and-of-course-dead children do, this one ended up in my professional world. He will stay there for a good six to 12 months, where myself and my coworkers will translate the horrible into somewhat palatable language understood by those at an eighth-grade reading level. Owen will never leave my psychological world. He is now on the list, behind Aliahna and Alejandra, Jonathon and McKenzie. It’s unfortunately lengthening.
We now have, of course, the added joys of the social media outcry against those whose behavior descends into the depths. That’s been also rather un-edifying, these urges we have on Facebook to cry for those who harm others to be horribly harmed themselves. We tap into these dark places in ourselves, and feel so righteous in doing it. Perfectly reasonable and good Christian people post on the social media pages of those who are charged about how much they would like to see them suffer sadistically, to be humiliated and debased. In making such claims, such calls for “justice” we debase only ourselves. I understand the impulse. I do. But I know that for myself, seeing these posts make me feel almost as sick as reading the details in the charging documents, almost as horrified as understanding the “how” and the “what.”
Now, though, speaking of social media, a Facebook friend tonight opined that we, humans, were incredibly fragile and ferociously strong. I love this, so very much.
I know that right now, as I sit here in the dark of my living room, listening the dishwasher and the fireplace, I feel pretty normal, and mundane. But I realize, as I also think about the anniversary of the death of my friend, that control, the ability to stave off the darkness, is an illusion. We are all so incredibly fragile.
In those moments though, when the doctor comes into the room, when the pagers go off, when the world gets all pear-shaped, when our loved ones are particularly vulnerable, we can find that place in all of us where we are so very ferociously strong.
I hope to be that way for others, for myself, in whatever way that I can. And I hope that what I find when I am forced to dig into the depths of who I am, I find who I was created to be. I hope that it is good.