I learn from others

Note:  I do hope that my self appointed editor will not find too much wrong with this post.  (I did change a lot of  “it’s” to “its” just for you.)

Much of what we learn throughout life is from others. Good or bad, that is what we have. That is what we get. That is what we all learn.

Our culture, our values, many of our desires, goals, dreams, our entire lives are built piece by piece. Our experiences are major contributors to our learning (life’s education).  Even though some of our experiences are as a result of some accident or unintended source, still, most of  it comes from someone else.

Lately…. well…. lets just say that I have learned a good bit as a result of my personal life about others, their struggles, their experiences, their hurts and fears, their limits, their needs, their desires, and in doing so, I’ve learned much about myself.  That would include my hurts and fears, understanding my own struggles, what my needs and desires are, and have even solidified some of my own goals and dreams.

You’ve seen in my blog much of the pain I have felt. I don’t just feel pain for myself. I feel pain for others as well. I see in them the pain they feel and I feel it with them.  Sometimes I can feel exactly what they feel.  Other times, well, there is no possible way for me to fully understand.  Why?  Some experiences I just can not experience.  It could be because of my age and what they have experienced happened long ago.  It could be a gender based issue that it is not possible for me to experience.  Either way, I can still see and feel the pain.  Not exactly, but it is there none the less.

No-one can really feel what you or I feel.  It is very individual.  It can be similar but not completely the same.  Each experience or piece of knowledge  effects each of us differently.  With things happening at such a fast pace in this age I can completely understand how it can be so overwhelming.

No matter how difficult I have it (or you for that matter), life is harder for someone else.  The struggles are greater, their history more muddled, their injury deeper.  I know… it really doesn’t matter in the moment does it.  No matter how hard we try, what is happening to us is happening right where we are.  It is extremely difficult if not impossible to ignore the rain falling around us to see that the tsunami is occurring somewhere else in someone else’s life.

Most of the time the individual can cope with the normal everyday issues that come up.  Right now I have seen an increase in the stress levels of those around me as well as in my own life.  For some of it has to do with the economy.  For others it may have to do with a love relationship.  Others may have stress due to a job or even no job.  Others have mittigating factors that compound the issues.  Medications that they are on regularly.  Family matters that heap more on.  I know of some people that multiples of all of the factors listed and maybe more.

When you heap so much on a person (or even when it is heaped upon them), there comes a time when that level of stress becomes so great that some sort of release is needed.  There are always ways of dealing with the pressures.  Some good.  Some not so good.  I do not condem anyone for finding their own way of escape.  I have come to understand and even empathize with the person that came up with the phrase “stop the world – – I want to get off.”  No… I’m not saying I really want to get off.  I think it means, it is just too much to bear sometimes.

Self medication is prevalent.  I’m not totally against it.  Just want to encourage anyone that may be involved in such to be extremely careful.  This could include any type of drug including alcohol, over the counter meds, prescription meds, over exercising (yes you can), even love can be a drug or at least the similitude of love.  Actually either.  Real or fake.  I’m finding that there are those that don’t recognize the difference.  Some because they’ve never really had it and some because they just don’t want to really see it.

I am learning.  Sometimes it is very difficult.  Hard to do because sometimes it requires sacrifice of what I want for the good of someone else.  Call me selfish.  I don’t really think so.  Sometimes the learning has to do with taking care of myself first.  If you are one that loves to help others, you find that to be a difficult thing to do.  But you must.  You can be of no value to anyone else if you do not take care of yourself.  This does not mean you should be self centered.  Rather, it means that you should take care to protect yourself at least enough so that there is something left for you to give to someone else.

If a fruit tree were able to select to give its fruit of it’s own accord, if it were to give all of its fruit to one other tree (so to speak), that would be ok.  If, however, that same tree were to give all of its fruit and then all of its leaves, its bark, its roots, all of itself…  well…  you get the idea.  You have to leave enough of yourself to allow more fruit to grow.  Otherwise, you have nothing left to give.

For now, I just want to think a while.  Maybe not even think.  Maybe just be.  Be without thinking too much.  Live without expecting anything or looking for anything.

I want to trust but I find it difficult.  Lies from others have caused me to  become a skeptic.  So, I’m back to just living and learning.  Someday, I hope to be able to love like I have before.  Deeply, completely.  I hope it is not too long before this happens.  Living and learning without loving is not really living in my book.  It is simply existing.  So I continue.  So I exist.  So I try, one day at at time, to learn to love again.  There is still enough love left in me to grow.

Yes.   There are those that I have that I love.  I have family and friends.  I love them and most of the time they love me.  Still, I am one man.  With one man’s thoughts.  Attempting to find meaning.  Attempting to find understanding.  Trouble is, I find that part of that song is just a little too true.  “The more I learn, the less I know.”  I continue to learn from others.

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the bleeding heart

For those that read this post regularly or even semi-regularly, be for-warned.  This one is dark Very dark.

A good friend has given me a good book to read.  One that gives credence to the dark side of life.  Its value (the dark part) is greater than you might imagine.  Not so much because the dark is a good thing as it is to acknowledge the dark.  To draw strength from those things that we hide in the dark, learn from it, and use it to live a more full life.

For me, this time, it is a pouring out.  Ridding myself of some of my pain.  Draw from it if you can.  But be careful.  This is dark stuff.  Very thick.  Almost poison.  Be careful…  be VERY careful here.   What you may get a glimps of may be more than you can handle.

I’m not kidding…


the bleeding heart


No…  I’m not talking about the flower or even the type of person that has sympathy for another person that they have reason to believe has been allegedly persecuted.  I’m not talking about a physical heart that has been punctured or cut or otherwise damaged.

But I am talking about that emotional heart.  The heart inside each of us that, when hurt by someone we love, can feel as if it were bleeding out, loosing a battle with its own ability to survive.  That part of the person that has been given to someone in trust believing that it was going to be safe only to have it broken, stomped on, kicked, bruised, burned, sliced, cut, and otherwise ripped to shreds.  Some wounds are self inflicted as the heart rips itself apart trying to allow another to be free.  Pulling itself away from that other.  Tearing itself in the process, just so that the other can be happy.  These rips are the most gruesome of all wounds.

For a visual example:

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The heart is still alive but it would seem as though only barely.  Every beat spews blood of the most precious kind.  The kind that gives birth to love and caring.  The kind that can save one’s soul from the bowels of debauchery.  The kind of blood that gives till there can be no more giving.  The kind that forgives.  The life nearly gone, this hear struggles to find strength for another beat.  Just one more.  Just another.  One more and again one more as it fervently attempts to live just long enough to gain some strenth.  Each beat an attempt to just keep going.

The heat of the blood being shed causes fires to boil within.  The boiling causes uncontrolled leaking from the eyes as the steam rises even if never seen by human kind.  The leaking goes on for minutes, days, and longer.  It goes on without being seen by others.  Much like the blood that is leaking from the open wounds.  The blood turns to acid in the stomach.  Such that it eats at even the desire to eat as that would just cause more pain.  The pain, almost unbearable, flares and flashes.  Visions appear in the mind of the good turned bad.  Of beautiful times lost.  Of time itself being lost forever.

They (again, sometimes I hate “they”) say that “time heals all wounds.”  I wonder.  Does it really?  One can only hope.  One can only try.  At least till that last drop falls.  Till that last beat.  Till there is nothing left to give.  Till the hope fades.  Not the physical.  Emotional, yeah even spiritual.

Ah.. the spiritual.   Aren’t you glad I mentioned that all you bible thumpers out there?  Maybe you are.  Maybe you aren’t.  Maybe you don’t really know for sure.  All I can say about the spiritual as it concerns this part of life, to me, the spirit dies a bit with each injury.  Can it survive?  That remains to be seen.  Some say yes.

I really like “Some” a whole lot better than “They.”  Some say there is hope.  Some say that there is healing.  Some say things so beautiful it is too good to be true or believe.  Still, you have to listen to some, sometimes.  Even if for no other reason than to gain just enough energy for that one more beat.

That last beat?  That last grasp at what could be, what should be, what has been shown in a couples life shown me from early childhood, what I’ve looked for all my life and have yet to find?  That moment when the bleeding stops because there is nothing left to bleed and no more blood is being created?

That It hasn’t come just yet though it feels as though it is very near.   How do I know?  Its the heat.  The heat is not as strong as it was.  The eyes feel cooler.  The heart feels almost as if it has a small chance of growing cold this time.  It’s as if a seed of cold has been planted in a wound and has started to grow.  Tentacles of the plant are attempting to take root.  Currently they are not able but the fight is on.  I can feel it.  Is it too late?  I’m not sure.  Only standing back and observing these things.

This battle is one that is or could be a last battle.  Should the seed of cold take root, that emotional heart will die.  A rock hard cold will take its place as the heat dissipates.

Where this plant takes the heart is a place where many already exist.  There is really no life in this plant.  How could that be?  It sucks the life out of all it touches once rooted fully. Once it takes hold, the emotions stop.  Nothing can get in and nothing could ever warm the solid icy heart.

I try to listen to the “some.”  Maybe even just the “one.”  Maybe there is a “one” out there.  I’m holding out hope.  One beat at a time.  One day at a time.  I have to keep trying.  I have to keep hoping.  At least till that last blood drop falls.

Did you notice the bandage?  Can it hold enough of the blood to allow the heart to heal before that seed takes root?  Time will tell.  Thing is, that bandage is bloody too.  It will have to be strong.  It will have to withstand a lot more blood just to hold that heart together.  The wounds are deep.  This struggle….  these last few beats….  could be all this heart has left.

This last word is just for someone I know that needs to hear this.

Breathe


Note: I’m OK folks.  Really…  I’m OK.

ca·thar·sis [kuh-thahr-sis]  –noun, plural -ses[-seez]

1. the purging of the emotions or relieving of emotional tensions, esp. through certain kinds of art, as tragedy or music.
2. Medicine/Medical . purgation.
3. Psychiatry .
a. psychotherapy that encourages or permits the discharge of pent-up, socially unacceptable affects.
b. discharge of pent-up emotions so as to result in the alleviation of symptoms or the permanent relief of the condition.

Thanks go to MS for his sending me this definition.

under the surface

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Note:  Comments by readers do not necessarily reflect my views.  However, I prefer to offer those views to everyone if possible.  Just try to keep the language in check.  If it is vulgar or racist or otherwise in extreme poor taste, don’t be surprised if it doesn’t get posted.  I’m not opposed to posting comments that “could offend.”  Just those that intentionally hurt others.

It has been said that men are very simple.  I’ve often said that I am not one of those men that are simple.  I tend to be more complex.  However, I feel that, in truth, all men are complex as are women.  None of us are simple.  We all have many layers.  Yes, some are more complicated than others, I’d agree.  Still, none of us are really simple.  We may think that we are.  We are not.

I started writing this before some things happened to me today but the things that have happened confirm what I am saying.  You can not fully understand very much of what is going on in the mind of someone else unless you know them very well.  And even then, even if you do, even if you are very close, there are still things that can not be read or understood.  There is just too much there to grasp it all.  So far as what happened, I will keep those things to myself.  Much of what I will write will have absolutely nothing to do with today other than thoughts I wrote down prior to those events.  But the events did prove my point.

A friend and I were talking today at work and some of this came up.

Many times people do things and don’t even know why they did them themselves.  They don’t even know themselves well enough to know the reason behind, the root of the reason, for what they do (sometimes).  I’m not talking about everything they do.   Just some of them.  Much of the time what a person does is out of reaction.  Reaction to things that have been buried deep within the psyche and hidden so that no-one can find it.  Not even the person who is hiding whatever.  Well, the person hiding the “whatever” really can find it if they want, but that is why they buried it in the first place.  They don’t want to find/face the whatever.  It may be too hard to bear.  But it is still there.  Effecting them whether they want it to or not.  Whether they admit it, own up to it, face it, or not.

My father used to tell me “believe ¼ of what you hear and only ½ of what you see.”  He gave me a lot of good stuff.

We all filter everything through our own filter that has been created by our own experiences throughout our life.  Each and every one of us has our own baggage and every one of us is different and so our baggage is different.  We each have some idea of what we think we are.  Most of us are severely wrong.  Most of us don’t know ourselves very well.  We want to think we do, but we don’t.  Let’s face it, it is a scary proposition to know thyself.  That means you have to face your flaws.  Something none of us wants to do and expend  great deal of effort to not do.  The end result is that we can never grow past that problem until we face it head on.

This is not supposed to be a blog about how screwed up we all are.  Actually, we are not.  Yes we have our faults, but, we have many good points as well.  Many more good than bad in most cases.  We just have more difficulty with the parts we don’t like or want.  That doesn’t make us broken.  That doesn’t make us un-fit.  Just different.  I have to go back to that quote I mentioned in another blog.  Be what you are.  That is the first step in becoming better than you are.

During Spring Break, I stood on the balcony of the condo I was in and took in the view.  It was early in the morning.  Still a little dark out but the sun was beginning to come up enough that it was just starting to turn light.  I looked out over the water and gazed at the horizon.  I turned my head to look down the beach as far as I could see.  I then turned the other way and looked as far down that way as I could.  It was fairly clear this particular morning and the view seemed almost endless.

Time of day does not match statement
Again.. Time does not match statement

I began to think on how large it all was and how small each of us is in comparison when you think of us on a physical level.  The vastness of the cosmos began to come to mind.  Standing on that balcony, 20 floors up, the earth looked so big.  Then my mind wandered to how large our solar system is.  How large our galaxy with millions of stars with some of them dwarfing our own star.  And to think ours is only one (and a small one at that) of millions of galaxies.

It would seem to make us very insignificant.  Funny I didn’t feel insignificant.  I don’t now.  With all that is, with all that has been or will be, in my mind…  I matter.  Others matter to me too.  We are all a part of this.  We are all a part of the whole.  Each of us matter.  Each is important.  There is much under the surface of each of us just as there is much under the surface of the water or the ground.  Each of us has much to learn.  Each of us has much to give.  It is in the giving of ourselves that we will learn the most about ourselves and be able to give more and learn more and on and on and on.

Uncover a layer.  Look beneath the surface.  Find what is true.  Find what is of value.  In fact, look deep to find the most priceless things.  True treasure awaits those that look deeper.  If you find a flaw, keep looking deeper.  It may surprise you how precious the find.  Both you and those around you are worth the look.  It is worth the effort to look under the surface.