(This was part of a class assignment)
I dream that we have taken some sacred turn to a place where we could feel how connected we are one to another and be present and still and willing to listen with our hearts to where we are in this field of life, but that is not what I am experiencing. I am experiencing a path where, at the stop signs, the words denial, caution, disrespect, dishonor and don’t apologize often appear and the green lights to where you and I live are not given permission to walk over to.
I am on a dating site, and the stories, defensiveness, offensiveness and out and out lies set my head spinning. In some shape or form and if only a hello, I connected with about two hundred people. Who are the ones most willing to be with who they are, to be with what created their stories, to let the shame and blame go, to be with what they have learned, to want more than a quick fix of total approval, they are few, and it saddens me.
I spend a year in training to hone in some skills I had acquired long ago and used when I taught English. Everything is fine as long as I am smiling, as long as I am affirming, as long as I am not questioning, as long as I am not trying to fine tune things in areas they don’t want to look at, even if it will be profitable to them, and suddenly I am the enemy. My heavy heart is fertile ground for their disapproval. So the very question I am carrying becomes answered in their turning to a survival mode of lies, inconsistencies and exaggerations all thrust out at me rather than face with me my dilemma—the cognitive dissonance in their song, even with my having the facts down in black and white. I was hoping for a different answer. I was hoping for an answer that respected my query in a way, that answered the unspoken query leaning in on us untalked about like a spider’s web forming in the corner by the window and most seen when the light hits it. How do we learn to really talk with each other, when things get tough?
I am in a class and we are doing our lab experiment and having to take weekly data. I mention something about having taken statistics over the summer and before I can finish a sentence I am snapped at by a young girl saying, “This isn’t statistics.” The teacher hears and looks at her and says, “Yes, it is; it is exactly statistics.” One person decides she will be leader of the pack and buddies up with someone. By this time, I am saying little. The results are sent out and the calculations are all wrong when the experiment is done. I don’t realize it till the week of our finals, since I am busy with other things. I tell the person who had created the excel sheets with the totals. Already some people have their papers in. He asks me to send my results to all and tells the teacher of his error. I get an A in the class, but do I feel good about this A. No, I don’t. I would have liked the scenario to have gone differently, but a thousand cultural dilemmas got in my way. I am asking myself over and over, “How could I have created something different,” and one day to the point of tears. I don’t like the kinds of alliances that I am seeing. I don’t like what they are based on.
I am on Facebook. The election is over and people are still shooting at each other, still trying to gun down the enemy or enemies, because their side is the side of justice and freedom and liberty. So I speak to the fact that, the answer is inside us. I speak to the fact that more dividing is just taking the side of war. I speak to them of what is it we need to create within ourselves and within the social consciousness, so this war of words is over. I am met with speech loaded with barbs and bayonets, and I think to myself, “What would they do differently, if they ran this country?”
Long ago, I was so shy. Long ago, I never said my opinion. It is painful writing about this, and I am struggling for an answer to come. I am struggling to walk the walk and not just talk the talk, but this river of life has been having a lot of twists and turns, and makes me wonder what is the path we are all walking on, and how does my tributary feed into the whole? So I write, study poetry and metaphor, and I keep listening to the sound of the conversations we are having with each other. Waiting for the conversations to change, and I hope that this day I can make a difference even in one person’s life.