We all have our loads we carry. Some appear bigger than others. I wonder if they actually are bigger, or if to each person the load is heavy…no matter what it is.
I sometimes feel my loads quite keenly. A 12-year-old boy who cannot speak but is constantly asking and trying to tell me what he wants. His attempts at supplication, his cries, his self-injurious behaviors, his anger…some days begin at 6am and don’t end until way past dark.
My daughter, whose company I yearn for, locks herself up in the basement, trying to remove herself from her brother’s incessant pleas.
I guess I could go on to list more loads. I’m sure you would have a great list yourself.
On those days when I feel the loads extra heavy, I usually have these thoughts:
“I can’t believe this is happening to me.”
“Do other moms know how good they have it?”
“I don’t know how to help my daughter deal with this.”
“I wonder how my new husband will bear this load.”
“How can I get rid of this load?”
“This can’t be this way.”
“I’ve got to find a solution so I can change this.”
Then at some point I read a few news articles or listen to CBC Radio on my way home from dropping off my kids at school.
These are some loads other people carry:
There are those families in Syria who are raising a whole generation of children who have not been able to go to school due to the perpetual bombing and ravages of war around them.
There are those individuals and families struggling against all odds and death to cross the Mediterranean Sea.
There are those who have been sucked into the vortex of mental illness or addiction; who walk the streets, unable to keep a family, job or a home…intent only on meeting their immediate and overpowering need for the next high.
There are those who wear the white helmets, digging through the rubble of war…hoping only to find and save that one survivor. Their only joy in the horror that surrounds is that of saving one life.
There are those children, who like my son, have disabilities, but who have been left tied in a crib or wheelchair in an institution. These children have stopped asking for anything many years ago, because there is nobody who hears them.
We all have loads, it is the very nature of living the human life. Why do I sometimes act surprised at mine? Why should I not assume some of the loads that this world collectively carries, especially when considering how light mine are in comparison? Besides, carrying loads like the ones I carry builds muscle, it builds strength and resilience…it builds patience and compassion.
The loads; they are what they are…they may alter a bit but they are always there. But ME, I can shift…I can change…I can adapt so that I can accommodate the loads in my life, and maybe (hopefully), help somebody else with theirs.