Have you ever thought about what you’d do if you ruled the world? I mean not in a political sense, but in a “if things were they way I wish they were” way?
Would you go back in time and undo mistakes? Would you freeze life for brief moments while considering what to do when you feel angry, hopeless, and afraid?
Would you own homes across the planet? Would you help the starving and neglected? Would you have liposuction, professional highlights, or hire somebody to watch the kids for two hours while you take a much-needed nap after being up at 2am, and up for good by 7am, never feeling rested or ready enough to start your day?
Would you start the best special needs school? Would you fix your leaky roof? Start a college savings? Help the needy?
I want to do all of those things, but I don’t want to rule the world.
I would like to change it.
I’d remind all of us that our interactions matter. That judging others is easy and quick and may alleviate some of the pain caused from living our lives, but that ultimately, we are only able to judge ourselves, and our own actions and reactions.
We have a choice.
We can act and live with grace and deep breaths, or we can act and live with angry hands, red faces, and accelerated hearts. We can choose to feel the power that spreading hate, fear, and tears brings. We can step on other people’s weaknesses, and we can stand taller while trampling over them on the pile of judgement and self-righteousness brings.
We can feel the power that comes from giving love even when it’s hard to. We can understand that when people lash out at us, they are lashing out at their own worldviews and how they interpret who we are, without ever knowing us. We can spread love and understanding. We can decide, even when standing in an annoying line at Target while watching somebody “do it wrong,” that maybe, we don’t know what the rest of her morning looked like. What the rest of her life looks like.
We can decide to not walk on the fallen, and instead, give them a helping hand, and realize that life’s decisions are hard and devastating and until we’ve lived what they have, that we have no idea of their beauty, their triumphs, or their losses.
I don’t want to take over the world.
I would like to change it. I’d like to change the fact that my son came home from school yesterday a little bit more tender and unsure because a classmate called him a weirdo. I’d like to change the fact that my son – and all of us – are a little bit devastated when somebody thinks we’re weird and calls us on it.
I’d like to find a way for children to be children and wonder why another little kid “can’t talk like a regular person” without it becoming something for the kid who can’t “talk like a regular person” to be ashamed of.
I’d like for all of us to regress a bit into our tribal selves, and realize that we’re a global village. That our actions have ripples that spread to the satellites and the webs and that choosing to not understand hurts a lot more than choosing to understand does.
Because judgement when people don’t know the story? It’s not okay.
Maybe I have made choices that you don’t understand.
You’ve likely made some that I don’t understand.
But really? Who are we? Have we been in one another’s homes when we’re ill, dealing with life’s birthdays and deaths, horrors, heartbreaks and quiet celebrations? Do we really know?
And, most importantly, shouldn’t we try to understand first? What if we had empathy before judgement, all of the time.
What if? It might just bring all of us a bit closer to the perfectly imperfect that we know exists, on a calm spring day.
I want all of us to take deep breaths and remember the best peace we’ve known.
This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post. Each week, I host bloggers and writers who want to participate in a prompt and make new writer friends. This week’s sentence is “The first thing you must do to take over the world is…”