We have all gone mad.
For months, I have struggled to find words to express the deep feelings of a heart all tangled up. It’s been a hard year.
And then last night I watched as people set an American flag on fire and rioted angrily in the streets. Another riot in a year of riots.
We’re all so starved for selfless kindness, we’re going mad.
A couple of months ago, I sat in a coffee shop with a friend. She is the kind of friend you who looks past a misspoken word and catches your heart.
“I just felt so alone, SO much,” A tear escaped.
There was fire in her eyes, strength. She gets it. “You know what I think?” She said, “People didn’t know how to care. They couldn’t relate. They felt helpless.”
I went home and I have thought about that for weeks.
I thought about all the times I didn’t know what to do, so I did nothing.
And I have decided it’s time to change how I live.
Don’t wait until you understand what it’s like to be stuck in a hospital room for endless winter days, to care.
Don’t wait until you know what it’s like for your mother to die, to care.
Don’t wait until your baby gets hooked up to machines and is given opiate drugs for pain relief, to care.
Don’t wait to reach out, until you can relate to a stage four cancer diagnosis, or a miscarriage, to care.
Don’t wait until you have a kid to help a mother.
Don’t wait till you are old and slow, to shovel someone’s walkway or carry someone’s groceries, or it will be too late.
Because the truth is? Your fear – that you don’t know what to say or do – is irrelevant, if you love.
Love is a language we all understand.
And to the person in a dark place? Love is all they need.
And if you are too busy to take the time to care?
Quit busy. It’s not worth it.
Take the time it will take to post another Instagram selfie, to send a text saying “I’m thinking of you.” Use the money you’d spend on a new shirt and send someone flowers. Make an extra pizza and invite your new neighbor over.
Because love is a language we all understand.