A woman asked me this past week what God wants me to do with my life. I didn’t hesitate with my answer, “To entertain, of course. If He didn’t, He wouldn’t keep providing me with so much fodder to write about!”
To that extent, over the last several months now, I’ve had to deal with some incredibly rude and thoughtless people. Why? I’m not sure. Maybe God is providing me with fodder, negative fodder. Like Freud stated in Civilizations and Its Discontents, if you don’t find a way to sublimate aggression, there’s a pretty damn good chance you’ll destruct. So when people provide me with aggressive words, attitudes and actions, I tend to use that for fodder in my writing and sublimate the hell out of it!
The problem is I haven’t been able to write fast enough to keep up with all of the aggression and hostility I’ve encountered. This bumper crop of bum squat has made me an incredibly weary and sad soul. As my therapist noted, “Sometimes writing and talking isn’t what is required. Sometimes you need only give voice to your tears. They have plenty to say.” So I had a nice cry at his office. This helped considerably.
At this point, I’m asking very nicely for the Universe and all of its citizens to quit giving me so much negative fodder to write about for awhile. I’d like the sun to come out of hiding and for people to send me light and joy and happiness my way. I’ll reciprocate in turn. I promise. I’d like to enjoy the kinder, lighter, funnier, and warmer sides of my fellow humans. I’d like to write about that.
It is my hope and prayer as we enter the month of November that each of you reading this − and even those not reading this – will consider being a little more thoughtful and just a tad kinder to loved ones, acquaintances and strangers this month. It takes precious little to do something to make someone’s day. So just for this month, please don’t be that person that goes out of their way to be someone else’s reason to feel less-than-happy. You’ll feel better knowing that you chose to embrace your kinder, gentler side and that others benefited.
You don’t have to lie to be kind. Neither do you have to agree with anyone. But consider not always expressing your thoughts or opinion, especially if what you’re conveying isn’t going to be helpful or you know that your sentiments will only end up being hurtful. Trust me, I’m guilty of doing this as well. I’m trying to do better.
Do stand up for what you believe to be right. Be courageous and champion those who are vulnerable. Know that you can tell your truth and still be respectful and sensitive to someone who may hold a different truth.
Also, think for yourself. Automatically agreeing with another or others just to “get along” tends to accentuate the worst in people while giving the illusory sense that they aren’t individually accountable, especially when the vibe turns negative. Mob mentality or “group think” is a very real and scary phenomenon. Make the conscious effort to think things through for yourself and to use good critical thinking skills before you open your mouth or act. Be proud of what you say and do even if it goes against what the rest is saying and doing.
Most of all, be your best self and try and be the kind of person that makes others glad that you’re in their presence and that they know you!
These, in my humble opinion, are skills worth developing and honing. It costs nothing more than a genuine smile and a willingness to embrace your humanity. And it still gives me plenty of positive fodder to write about!
Cheers to all! Have a warm, safe and light-filled November!
4 thoughts on “Fodder for Writing: Jeers, Tears and Cheers”
I think this is one of your best pieces. It succinctly describes the pain we all feel when treated badly by our fellow man/woman.
Kindness — the Golden Rule — a powerful human act to make life better for all. At church yesterday the congregation (mostly white I think) voted overwhelmingly to support Black Lives Matter. You could feel the tension and fear some people had on taking such a stand publicly — that there may be negative repercussions from the community in which we live. A black woman in the congregation took the microphone and warned the church to be careful about public statements in such a conservative community as P….
If only we as a people, and individuals, could treat others as we would like to be treated, movements such as Black Lives Matter would not be necessary.
Thanks so much for contributing to this dialogue. It’s crazy that we’re in the 21st Century and people still live in fear of retribution for taking a public stand in supporting a worthwhile cause … in America! Bless you and your Church. I’ll proudly stand with you … and the Golden Rule rules!
Love your article. It is filled with purpose and meaning. Just remember you get what you give. It takes courage to really say what we believe. We live in a world today, where right is wrong and wrong is right. It takes courage to stand up and speak the truth, and not follow the way the world goes. We all see things differently. We can all learn by listening to each other. Kindest goes along way in living in this upside down world. I say kill them with kindest no matter what .
If I could literally kill people with kindness, I’d be in prison for murder right now. However, point taken. Thanks for the encouragement, Jan. It means a lot to me! Thanks for your thoughts!