Last year around this time, the United States watched in horror as the people of Houston, then Florida, then Puerto Rico, suffered through massive storms that devastated those communities. From the outside, we watched, stunned and moved to do something, anything, to help alleviate the suffering.
It seems like such a long time ago. And in the intervening months, we as a nation have become emotionally battered by controversy after controversy. We have watched as our fellow men have perpetrated cruelties that we cannot even fathom as Americans, much less condone.
And through it all, every week, I have tried to write something encouraging. Something to help my readers, and myself, remember who we are. Something to help shore up our spirits as we work to create a civilization we can love, of which we can be proud.
I won’t lie to you–some weeks I find it almost impossible. I have many friends in the front lines of the activist communities, and I read with tired despair their posts from the battle. We try to find humor, gallows humor often, and keep our heads in the game.
But the truth is, so many of us are exhausted. We are tired of chasing will o’the wisp demons poking holes in every aspect of our lives. We are tired of screaming our heads off in the hopes that someone, anyone, will pay attention.
And most of all, we’re tired of being afraid.
I’m tired of being afraid.
This morning I was talking to a wonderful friend in Canada online. I told her I wasn’t sure why I kept writing these posts. I felt like I was just throwing them into the wind. And this remarkable woman said to me, “Honestly, you are ‘speaking into the wind’, but that’s the point. The wind takes you where you need to go.”
I thought about that for a long time.
These posts are me speaking into the wind, my words like dandelion spores carried places unknown. And then I remembered what exhaustion had made me forget: wind, water, earth, fire–we are all part of the system. Everything we are, everything we all are, is nothing but particles bumping against each other. It is virtually impossible to go through life without causing an effect–nothing ever stands still.
And just as I have no idea where the dandelion fluff of these post will land, none of us can predict the outcomes of our action and where the effect of our causes will be felt.
The point is not to wait for validation, because in truth we may never get it. We may never know what the ultimate effect of our lives will be. So we need to let go of the outcome. Do what we do in the clear knowledge that we may never seen the end of the story. Do what we do in the clear knowledge that there may never be an end to the story.
We need to do what we do because our hearts tell us it is right.
The dandelion doesn’t worry where its spores are headed. It just…dandelions with all its heart. And that’s good.
So, this week, when you are feeling the pressure of the current age, remember. Be like the dandelion, and let the spores fly where they fly.
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