Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The topic of sadness

It has been a rough week this week for many reasons.  The biggest is the passing of a childhood and current best friend's mother.  She was the nicest person I have ever met and I spent a ton of time at her house growing up.  She was taken way too early.  I feel terrible and I can't imagine how my friend feels.

The position of having a child with a terminal illness is also horrible.  It makes it hard for friends and family to talk to us about their troubles.  Even my friend dealing with his sick mother felt the need to qualify his situation by saying it was not as bad as what we are going through.  I certainly didn't prompt this.

This has made me think about the world and peoples troubles and I think it is easy for our family to always compare our situation with others.  Objectively, obviously, what we are going through is probably worse that most things.  Anne and I talk about what would be worse or better.  E.g.  if naomi was normal and died in a car accident at the age of 17 - is that better or worse than this.  If naomi had typical battens and developed normally until now would that be better?  This persons child has this problem but it isn't terminal so it isn't as hard as naomi?  I think these questions are natural but maybe miss the point.

When I was young and playing basketball or video games at my friends house and his mother made us brownies the world seemed good and full of hope.  As I have gotten older I realize from what I have seen personally and professionally that the truth is that the world is full of random misfortune.  I stopped looking for reasons a long time ago.  There are a lot of people in pain and dealing with loss or sadness.  It is a part of the imperfect human existence.  It is not a competition to be the worst.  Trying to empathize and accepting empathy without judging is what I am trying to work on.  I can thank Naomi for making me a better person in this way.

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