“We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop” – Mother Theresa
Hmm, the last time I posted it was Week Nineteen…and then I fell into the abyss that we can call “Summer Travel and a New Job”. I am not even going to try and catch up but just skip the month entirely and get back on track with Week Twenty Three. The easiest way to sum up the last four weeks without going into too much detail is that it was awesome. We spent time with friends, family, traveled and truly enjoyed the final month of Summer. One big blur of happiness if you ask me.
Unfortunately, that big blur of happiness has not been able to make me naive to what is going on around us in our country and our world. It is hard to ignore and I don’t think we should. I have been at a loss of words when it comes to talking about all of this but at this moment I am going to try.
I could start with terrorism. Or our political system. Or racism. Or violence. Or all the other discouraging things that seem to be invading our world.
I am not going to start with any of them.
I am going to start with me.
In a lot of ways, I really F-ed up.
If I am honest and reflect over the last 10 years, I don’t believe that I have always made the best decisions. Insecurities as you enter the world of Motherhood and school sometimes lead you down the path of getting yourself involved in ways you didn’t intend to.
I gossiped too much, forgave too little. I felt that my children were owed everything and in moments, didn’t believe they could do anything wrong. I lacked forgiveness and my loyalty was focused more on being a part of the popular crowd and not about what was always right. I judged others and felt entitled to a lot.
Even with all this baggage I had created for myself, I still saw myself as someone who was a good person, who attended Church every Sunday and loved my family and friends. I never reflected on the fact that even though I considered myself a good person, it didn’t mean that I was making good decisions all the time and perhaps was not always being as kind as I could be. I never really looked at how my behavior was contributing negatively to society. Unfortunately, I was wrong.
Perhaps I wasn’t the great person I thought I was.
Then I look at everything going on today.
With all the hate, the violence, and the disrespect that we see on a daily basis, it is hard to not feel as if this is all too overwhelming. What can we really do? This isn’t about us. It is them. Or is it?
Sometimes this big picture clouds us from the impact we actually make. Sometimes we fail to realize that the decisions we make in our small world has ripple effects.
The person we may not be kind to, the forgiveness we refuse to give, the words we spread too easily, the judgment we place too quickly.
We cannot sit back and question what is going on in our society when we are part of the ripple effect that creates it.
One small mean act, has ripple effects that extend to something greater than we can ever realize. They hurt. They create anger, pain and resentment. They destroy.
The beauty is that on the flip side, kindness can also extend far beyond our imaginations.
So I guess that is what I am saying.
Let’s think about who we are and who we want to be.
Who comes first? Ourselves or others?
Do we care more about what other people think or more about what is right?
Can we be kind when it is hard and give forgiveness when it doesn’t seem earned?
Who do we want our children to be? What example do we want to set for them?
Our world can change.
It may be slow. It may take time. But that drop we place in the ocean is meaningful. It will have ripple effects. If each of us strive to be better, give more forgiveness, place less judgement on others, and believe that we can create a world free of all this hate, it will happen.
Believe me, we can.
It doesn’t start with them. It starts with us.
And all it takes is one small drop.