to be kind

In the past few months I have lost. Friendships, part of my self-understanding and people in my life.

Friendships that no longer exist because priorities and love lie with other people.

Friendships that no longer can be because we don’t share the same set of expectations.

Friendships that no longer should be because even though I so desperately wish I could hold on to it I suffer and I get hurt, again and again.

My self-understanding as being able to connect to people, to really try to dig deep and to understand people has been shattered. I have been confronted with the reality of not knowing: I do not know what people think and feel. I am good in making up my dream land, projecting everything good onto others and forgetting: this is my version of how I would like the other to be, to think and to feel. And it is not fair – neither to them nor to myself.

A few weeks ago a friend of mine died. I hadn’t spoken to her in a long time and got news of it via social media (not a good way of finding out). I was shocked and told myself: life is too short, too fragile to keep waiting. There is no turning point, we don’t get back the seconds, the minutes, the days – it is happening now. We are living – now. With all our sorrows and joys, with all our fears and happiness.

She passed away asking for one thing: to be kind to each other. And these days, more than ever, this should be our guiding principle, our torch, the focus of our hearts.

To be kind – a great task; a challenge that asks us to always be present to the fact that life in all forms is valuable and thus, needs to be treated with love and patience.

To be kind means to see and recognize beauty and uniqueness in everyone and everything.

A big thing to ask. A great task to pass on to others. And yet, maybe the only way to live a meaningful life –

because being kind means giving and assigning meaning to everyone and everything.

 

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