14 August 2011

people as privilege

one of the most incredible privileges we have in life: people.

to know them, to love them, (dare I say?) to hate them, to be with them, to talk with them, to eat with them, to drink with them, to fight with them, to walk with them, to walk behind them, to marvel with them, to disagree with them, to watch them, to help heal them, to be healed by them, to discuss with them, to unload on them, to be unloaded on by them, to miss them, to hug them, to learn from them, to learn about them...

we are given this privilege up close and from a distance.

we are given this privilege whether we like it or not, whether we can handle it or not, whether we are ready or not.

we are given this privilege in every sphere of life, in every stage of life.

we are given this privilege in plenty and in want, in abundance and in scarcity.

we are given this privilege whether we can recognize it as such or not.

sitting with friends as they come out of coma's, sleeping at their bedside so they know someone's there.

getting your dear friends' toddler twins ready for bed and witnessing their no-holds-bar giggles in the peekaboo game that is sliding their pj's over their heads.

what feel like measly attempts at encouraging and supporting families who are trying to hold it together as they try to care for their very sick children.

caring for those very sick children.

challenging a friend to their first camping trip.

being challenged by the experience of wanting to be everything to everyone, failing miserably, and learning to be genuinely ok with that.

having your heart actually ache with loved ones whose loved ones don't love them very well.

the anonymity of sitting by yourself in a crowd of people you don't know who don't care who you are or what you're doing.

failing to love those who are hard to love in exactly those moments in which they are hard to love - wanting to cuss them out - later wanting to learn how to do it differently next time - wondering if you ever will.

watching your friends build families and cherishing moments with your own.

witnessing the art of pretending - namely what we call "acting" and "theater"

being totally exasperated, manipulated, and walked all over.

being totally overwhelmed and discouraged by the condition of the world (which includes you - aka ME).

a walk with a dear friend on a scalding summer afternoon with frozen yogurt at the mid-way point.

cool summer nights with mom and dad on the back porch

clapping along with black church choirs as you sit sweating on a street corner.

the experience of your anger rearing it's ugly head.

The hearts, the minds, the personalities, the sins, the glories, the colors, the diversity, the hurts the love - all privilege. people.