Lately I’ve been thinking, What exactly do I think about the world today?. That seems dry, I know.
I mean, what do I know about the world? I’ve lived in the same neighborhood for my entire life, watching the same thing every day, on the streets, on T.V., in school, inside my home. I know exactly what you know. I know the world, as I see it.
And what I see? Fear. I see people doing their best to control what they can of their lives, and, in the process, causing fear in others. But that’s normal, in my experience. People don’t tend to see the world through someone else’s eyes. They try, of course. But it usually gets stuck behind their own life.
Let me be clear. I am being introspective right now.
I am finding myself getting frustrated at the people in my life because of their lack of work ethic, or their callousness, or their perpetual stick-up-ass syndrome, or their–my–consistent lack of understanding. And then I feel ashamed. And I pretend. Until someone not-so-politely shoves a mirror before my face. On good days, that someone is me.
I’m hoping for a lot more good days.
Last week, I was hanging out with a friend at his place. We were watching a movie–Star Wars, the remastered-version-made-theatrical-again (yay!)–and having a very political discussion. Or rather, I was listening to him talk about his political opinions, while I interjected a few well-timed questions, which caused the abortion debate to come up, of course.
I am a woman, and, being a woman, I care about my reproductive rights. I care about my other rights, too, but, having ‘being a woman’ as the qualifying statement sections off the reproductive system as the main issue, as it is the only thing that a man could not ever experience the same way (I’m up for challenges to this, of course). Being such, I don’t think a man should have such a strong voice, as he appears to have currently, in how a woman takes care of herself in that area.
In fact, it is the only political area in which I find myself unable to see the “other side” clearly. My friend, being male, had his own views on the matter, and, thankfully for our civil political discussion, those views were very similar to my own. However, to round a long and detailed discussion down, he pointed out that the compromise that Obama managed with the Republicans over the employer-to-employee birth control issue was the absolute best way that the politicians could have handled the situation, and people who are voicing their very loud opinions on the matter don’t understand how lucky we are to have reached an area where the left and the right were actually working together instead of fighting like cats and dogs in a gladiatorial-like battle to the death.
I went home that night and thought about what he had said.
Previously, I had been disappointed that Obama had “bowed to the opposition” in that matter. But I realized, to be honest, that my friend was right. We can’t run a country without compromise.
We can’t do anything without compromise, actually.
We can’t have successful relationships, businesses, families, or classes without it.
We can’t interact with people over a long period of time without compromise.
So why are we at each other’s throats?
I never realized that I was part of that we.. until that conversation with my friend.
I am very private. I am private because people who judge like those depicted in the fights mentioned above disgust me. I’m private because I see those people everywhere. On the bus. At the coffee shop. At the workplace. In your face.
I’ve never written to the public before.
Not like this, anyway. Not where you could read it.
I suppose that that’s the way of the world–keep your thoughts, no matter how innocent, to yourself. For fear of consequences. For fear of your retribution.
The truth? That hurts. Not the person who hears it. It hurts the person who tells it. Now tell me, why would I decide to write this? Why would I decide to follow all the people who open their minds and hearts through the muck of societal expectation and discourse?
Because I’m one of you.
Because I’m me, and there’s nothing you can do about it. Because you’re you, and there’s nothing I can do about it. Because I want to be a part of you. Because I matter. Because we matter together. And apart? We’re just a bunch of people thinking the same thing:
What about me?