Our Best Selves

People talk about things in such a black and white way.  Let’s use the hot button topic of climate change as an example.  There’s a lot of talk on both sides of the issue about how the other side is ignorant and “our way” is the best way.  Our truth is the only truth.  Bullshit. 

The climate is changing.  We can all agree on that.  What is also true is that there are many factors that are causing the climate to change.  There is a cycle, we’re in it.  The sun influences it as well.  And… the way we live, how we pollute, also affects it.  It’s not any one thing.  It’s all things together, contributing.

My point isn’t to start up a debate here about climate change.  My point is to say that, as with all things, black and white thinking gets us nowhere, but divided. The truth, as I’m always saying about little life things, is in the middle.  Parts of both are true.

We’re such a landscape of extremes.  Putting our dukes up, getting our feathers ruffled, pointing fingers, talking trash.  So many people talking trash.  And here’s the thing about that.  Talk trash in your own homes, or out to your friends, but do it amongst yourselves.  You don’t agree with something, fine, don’t agree with it.  You think something or someone is stupid, fine, think they are stupid. Keep it to yourselves, or your circle.  I don’t want to hear it unless you’re my wife, or friend, or family member and we’re having a debate or discussion or bitch session in person.  

I hate to say it, but people make themselves look bad.  They don’t show us anything about the person they are deriding, they show us their own backsides.  I get the frustration with how things are.  I do.  I get being disgusted, upset, angry even.  I get that.  But c’mon people.

I used to work with at-risk kids.  I did the job well.  I did it for a long time.  I had many talks about bullying, about common decency, about respecting other people because we don’t know their stories, or why they believe what they believe.  About how we aren’t always going to understand another person, but they are people just the same, with hopes and fears and upsets we know nothing about.  So be respectful, be kind, be generous of spirit.  Be your best selves.

I’ve tried to say this in many different ways on this and my other blog.  I have.  I’ve tried to say it and know I’m shouting in the wind.  People are passionate, they feel they must say something.  Anything.  They feel they can.

But I guess I’ll say this again as well.  Would you talk like that in public?  To actual people?  Would you call names and talk down to and be disrespectful to people in person.  If so, I guess it’s not surprising you’d do it in public on social media.  But if not, if you wouldn’t call people names or use derogatory slurs, then what makes you think it’s OK to do it on Facebook?  

I want to believe we are all people who love and want happiness for ourselves, our friends, our families, and our neighbors.  I want to believe we are all, most of us, kind and caring people.  

Not one of us has all the answers.  To think our way is the only way… well, that’s arrogance.  And isolating.  And just… sad.

The truth is in the middle, people.  Right there, in the middle.  Life is never black and white.  Look at your fellow humans with love, with kindness, and with the understanding that you don’t know someone, or why they think and believe the way they do.  Everyone has a story.  Before calling names, why not ask?  Why not try for understanding?  

Be our best selves.  We can.  It’s possible.

To use a Star Wars reference, because why not, stretch out with your feelings.

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189493019026

Our Best Selves

People talk about things in such a black and white way.  Let’s use the hot button topic of climate change as an example.  There’s a lot of talk on both sides of the issue about how the other side is ignorant and “our way” is the best way.  Our truth is the only truth.  Bullshit. 

The climate is changing.  We can all agree on that.  What is also true is that there are many factors that are causing the climate to change.  There is a cycle, we’re in it.  The sun influences it as well.  And… the way we live, how we pollute, also affects it.  It’s not any one thing.  It’s all things together, contributing.

My point isn’t to start up a debate here about climate change.  My point is to say that, as with all things, black and white thinking gets us nowhere, but divided. The truth, as I’m always saying about little life things, is in the middle.  Parts of both are true.

We’re such a landscape of extremes.  Putting our dukes up, getting our feathers ruffled, pointing fingers, talking trash.  So many people talking trash.  And here’s the thing about that.  Talk trash in your own homes, or out to your friends, but do it amongst yourselves.  You don’t agree with something, fine, don’t agree with it.  You think something or someone is stupid, fine, think they are stupid. Keep it to yourselves, or your circle.  I don’t want to hear it unless you’re my wife, or friend, or family member and we’re having a debate or discussion or bitch session in person.  

I hate to say it, but people make themselves look bad.  They don’t show us anything about the person they are deriding, they show us their own backsides.  I get the frustration with how things are.  I do.  I get being disgusted, upset, angry even.  I get that.  But c’mon people.

I used to work with at-risk kids.  I did the job well.  I did it for a long time.  I had many talks about bullying, about common decency, about respecting other people because we don’t know their stories, or why they believe what they believe.  About how we aren’t always going to understand another person, but they are people just the same, with hopes and fears and upsets we know nothing about.  So be respectful, be kind, be generous of spirit.  Be your best selves.

I’ve tried to say this in many different ways on this and my other blog.  I have.  I’ve tried to say it and know I’m shouting in the wind.  People are passionate, they feel they must say something.  Anything.  They feel they can.

But I guess I’ll say this again as well.  Would you talk like that in public?  To actual people?  Would you call names and talk down to and be disrespectful to people in person.  If so, I guess it’s not surprising you’d do it in public on social media.  But if not, if you wouldn’t call people names or use derogatory slurs, then what makes you think it’s OK to do it on Facebook?  

I want to believe we are all people who love and want happiness for ourselves, our friends, our families, and our neighbors.  I want to believe we are all, most of us, kind and caring people.  

Not one of us has all the answers.  To think our way is the only way… well, that’s arrogance.  And isolating.  And just… sad.

The truth is in the middle, people.  Right there, in the middle.  Life is never black and white.  Look at your fellow humans with love, with kindness, and with the understanding that you don’t know someone, or why they think and believe the way they do.  Everyone has a story.  Before calling names, why not ask?  Why not try for understanding?  

Be our best selves.  We can.  It’s possible.

To use a Star Wars reference, because why not, stretch out with your feelings.

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189493019026

Weston

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189483672271

310/365. Today was grandparent’s day at dance class, on…

310/365. Today was grandparent’s day at dance class, on top of it being Grandma Adventure Wednesday. We followed dance class with a croissant and coffee (water for the Noodle) at the new Starbucks. She is fun to hang out with. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/34NvmQM

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189475919096

309/365. Yesterday I did this.. — view on Instagram…

309/365. Yesterday I did this.. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/362AG2H

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309/365. This dog hates the vacuum cleaner. It is her nemesis…

309/365. This dog hates the vacuum cleaner. It is her nemesis and I am her sanctuary. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2DEi2lE

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189458440186

308/365. We put up our tiny tree a court.of days ago. — view on…

308/365. We put up our tiny tree a court.of days ago. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/3824Dlt

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189458439896

#NeuroHackNovember Here it is folks, the last day of November…

#NeuroHackNovember Here it is folks, the last day of November and the last day of this month long act of being grateful. I’m going to end with this… I’m grateful for the fact that I feel grateful as a rule. My default setting is to feel grateful and lucky and thankful for the wonders of the world, for my people, for the beauty I see most places I look, for music, and art, and words, and trees, and chocolate, and the sound the wind makes through trees. This life is magical, and I’m grateful I know that. Peace. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2r2Rnw5

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189398531086

#NeuroHackNovember Makeup post for yesterday. …

#NeuroHackNovember Makeup post for yesterday. I’m.grateful.for my huge, varied, beautiful family. I have an enormous family… full, step, half, in-laws, aunt’s, uncle’s, cousins, second cousins, nieces, nephews, and in and on.. I’m so lucky. What a great tapestry. What an amazing group. I’m grateful every day to have these wonderful people in my life. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2qb6fZ4

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189398530601

#NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for turkey dinner on my…

#NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for turkey dinner on my favorite holiday. I’m giving thanks for this beautiful life. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2R0CpBB

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189359677836

#NeuroHackNovember 306/365 I’m grateful for movie watching…

#NeuroHackNovember 306/365 I’m grateful for movie watching afternoons with the Grands. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2DoLlbI

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189335896881

#NeuroHackNovember 305/365 I’m grateful for school…

#NeuroHackNovember 305/365 I’m grateful for school Thanksgiving meals with adorable grandkids who happen to have made the tasty corn muffins! — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2pZgorK

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189325011351

#NeuroHackNovember I’m so grateful for this guy. Life can…

#NeuroHackNovember I’m so grateful for this guy. Life can be a real rollercoaster, but no matter what, good or bad, he’s there for me. We don’t live near each other anymore, but distance makes no difference. He’s the best. Loving, sincere, funny as hell, and the best hugger anyone knows. I love you, Kev. You rock this brother thing! — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2OFp4M6

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189294847041

305 #NeuroHackNovember Today we’re at the movies (Frozen…

305 #NeuroHackNovember Today we’re at the movies (Frozen 2) with the kiddos. I’m so grateful for this dude. He is really so much fun to hang out with. He’s interesting and caring and sweet. He’s the most genuine person I think I’ve ever met. I adore him. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2DbpWCG

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189277966796

305/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m a day late with his one. …

305/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m a day late with his one. I’m so grateful for this little dude. His creativity, sense of humor, and heart are phenomenal. He is a deep guy who loves music, and words, and feeling something (he’s doing dot to dots in this photo and he’s IN it). When he does something he’s all in. I love him so. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/33eTtWV

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189275796311

304/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for coffee dates…

304/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for coffee dates with good friends. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2QP74RY

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189234917391

Night — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2s7eeHa

Night — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2s7eeHa

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189222768791

304/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for a night out…

304/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for a night out with great friends and great music. @mankandsass @jennifer.m.heaton12 — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/34bU1hl

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189219067111

303/365 #NeuroHackNovember I forgot to post this yesterday so…

303/365 #NeuroHackNovember I forgot to post this yesterday so this is a make up post. I’m grateful for this magical creature. We were hanging out with her yesterday and she and I were watching Tangled. She tells me her favorite song is coming up and then she started singing it. She is all things good and light. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/339dHBt

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189215174951

303/365. I’m grateful for spontaneous roadtrips filled…

303/365. I’m grateful for spontaneous roadtrips filled with coffee, music, talks with my honey, and loads of adventure. #NeuroHackNovember — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/37nsMmc

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189179517641

#NeuroHackNovember I reposted a blog post I’d written in…

#NeuroHackNovember I reposted a blog post I’d written in 2015 about my leukemia experience. I feel so grateful for the life I have. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/342lCS4

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189152149046

… and, Breathe

It’s an anniversary for me and I thought I’d share this post I wrote in 2015. I’m so grateful for the life I’m living. For the people who I love and who love me in return. I’m just… Grateful.

The Life of Things

November 18.  Four years ago today we got the news that we’d been waiting for.  The molecular scan of my latest bone marrow biopsy showed I was in molecular remission.  It was a big deal.  My honey gave me a necklace with the date, a heart, and an inscription that included, among other things, the word, “breathe”.

I haven’t talked much about my experience with Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia.  When it happened I was so sick I basically had a near zero count for neutrophils, white blood cells, and platelets.  I was so sick they moved me by ambulance from the urgent care to the hospital because they said if I’d gotten in a car accident at that point, or even had an impact at all, I would die because my blood wouldn’t clot.  The first thing they did when they got me to the oncology unit at the hospital…

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302/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful every day for this…

302/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful every day for this little posse. What a fantastic family to be a part of. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2OoVFWa

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189138935201

302/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for all the lovely…

302/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for all the lovely friends in my life. They are the air, the light, and the oxygen when I need it, providing so much love and support. I have no idea where I would be without all of the beautiful souls who I’m so lucky to call friend. Special shout out to this one. Linda Godoy, some people feel like home. You are one of those people for me. I love you so and am so grateful for your presence in my life. — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/2NUb5mD

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189107646771

301/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for our love of…

301/365 #NeuroHackNovember I’m grateful for our love of Illini Volleyball, the joy it brings, and the awesome people we get to enjoy the game with!! @jdeluce — view on Instagram https://ift.tt/32SJvua

from Tumblr https://breakopenthesky.tumblr.com/post/189092153171