There is so much going on in the world right now. It is overwhelming, upsetting, scary, and disheartening. I tend to be a person who focuses on the bright side and the glass being half full, but this isn’t a time for bright sides. This is a time where we need to see the entire glass.
Most of us know what we know. When you are born, you are educated about your family, you get to know your culture, your neighborhood, the foods that your family likes most, the movies that relate to the vibe of your home, the music that your parents enjoy, the religion that your family practices, and the places your family frequents. This is your world and you get to know your world well.
It is not until you get a little bit older where you realize how much you don’t know. You make friends who have different experiences than you have had. They may have different religions or skin color, have grown up on a farm vs. your growing up in the city or eat tons of meat where you were raised vegetarian. These friends add a few more colors to the rainbow of your life as you beginning to feel out what other experiences there are in the world.
Differences are what make us special. If everyone was the same, what a boring world this would be. Learning about others is what makes us all sensitive to each other and powerful enough to affect change. When we are willing to learn more about each other – our experiences, our histories, our hardships and our successes – we really see each other.
This is a time for listening. Listening to the loud voices, the educated voices, and the voices of those who can’t find the words to express their feelings. If you don’t know what to say, that’s okay, because maybe this is not the time for speaking – this is the time to listen. It is time to hear other people’s experiences, other people’s pain and suffering, and other people’s fight.
I like to say often, “I don’t know what I don’t know, but I’d like to learn.” So I offer no advice at this time because it is not my place to offer advice. It is my place to listen and learn as much as I can. And with that newfound knowledge, do what I can to make this world a better place. Teach my children so that they can teach their children. And eventually, if enough people are listening and learning, we can make some real, lasting change.