There is great beauty, deep love, unspeakable joy in this world. That is true.
But there is also great pain, deep sorrow, and unspeakable grief. That is also true.
Within moments of posting my Thankful Tuesday list last night, I read this story
, posted by one of my favorite writers. My heart is broken for her and her family.
Someone I know buried her dog this past week... not the neighbor I mentioned last Thursday, another friend.
Someone else dear to me was recently confronted with the fact that her soon-to-be-ex-husband has already moved on.
Another sister of my soul and her three children have been abandoned by her husband; he chose a woman 20 years her junior as his new companion.
After years of panic attacks, another dear one recently decided to ask for pharmaceutical assistance.
His live-in girlfriend took her stuff, the cash he had in the apartment, the car he bought her, emptied their mutual bank account, and left him.
Houses on the market for months while money drains to a dangerously low level.
Devastating medical diagnosis, surgery, rehab, medication - and the journey is far from over.
Her husband was diagnosed with cancer. Surgery. Fingers crossed that "they got it all."
Her mother had late stage breast cancer. Surgery. They didn't get it all. She went back under the knife. Chemo. Radiation. Crossing the fingers again.
Brain tumor. Kidney failure. Congestive heart failure. Unexplained fainting. Blood clots.
Jobs still being sought.
Children are anxious, broken-hearted, fearful of being told they are inadequate, wary of bullies, and terrified of going to school. Their parents feel the same way about their own circumstances.
Here in our house, we say, "Everybody's got something." Without exception, everybody has got something they are facing. Everybody is dealing with something dreadful. Everybody is afraid of something. Everybody is worried about something. Everybody. Every single body.
So here's my goal, my desire, my suggestion:
Be kind. Be gentle. Be patient with everyone you meet.
You never know what people are going through.
You never know. You don't need to know.
I don't need to know. But I can be kind nonetheless.
I shall be kind all the more.
"Be kind; everyone you meet is fighting a tough battle."