Just A Little Rant

So much of life these days is out of whack.  It’s gotten so bad that I don’t even want to turn on the news anymore in the mornings.  Sadly you hear about a mom getting shot, an innocent victim of gang violence, or a horrible fire with loss of young lives, or a fatal car crash because someone wasn’t paying attention.  Sickness, addictions, and suicides.  It’s all enough to make a person wonder what the point of life is.

Maybe I’m just the type of person who feels too much; gets overly emotional.  Bad stuff happens everyday.  A lot of unfortunate and tragic things happen to good, hard-working people who are just trying to make a living and take care of their families.  You hear about these tragedies and it causes you to shake your head and try to understand the point in all of it, if there is a point.

So many things just don’t make sense.  I understand that desperate people do desperate things.  Maybe we need to focus on helping each other out more.  And I’m talking about those people who actually need help.  The parent out of work due to no fault of their own, those who have serious illnesses, or contemplating suicide, and those struggling with addictions.  Get help.  Don’t struggle alone.  There are a lot of people in this country who are dealing with the same issues you are, or even those who have already overcome them.  No one should go through this life alone.  There’s way too much craziness to deal with.  We all need someone at our side.  You can volunteer your time, take a meal to a new mom, or to a family who is grieving due to a recent death in the family.  There are so many options.  Look on line under Volunteering in your community.  And it’ll make you feel good as well.  Taking the focus off of our own lives and putting it on another is like a shot of endorphin. You can feel great about knowing you are making a difference.

This life is a long and bumpy ride.

Fear of the News

Every morning when my husband & I awake, after praying together before rising, the first thing we do is turn on the local news station.  I’ve developed a growing fear of the news lately.  With an increase in overnight violence, turning on the news can induce a panic attack in people.  We live in a Chicago suburb, and as everyone probably knows, there’s much violence in the inner city, and like a fire, is spreading out further.

I am for ‘every life matters’, not just black, or white, or Hispanic, but all life.  I don’t know what it feels like to be a different race, since I’m white, and maybe be racially profiled.  I desire for all to get the respect they deserve.  I mourn with those who mourn, especially around the nation currently.  I want truth to be revealed and everyone not to jump to conclusions.  Everyone needs to be able to tell their side of the story.

But I go back to the start of my piece and add, that as a writer, I have much to pick and choose from lately.  Life is happening out there.  People are living, dying, struggling, loving, and trying to survive in this world.  I tend to clip articles from the daily newspaper to hold onto for future reference in case I need it for a piece of fiction.  They provide me with ideas; reminders of what life in America is like.  From weather disasters to social issues, from politics to injustice; it’s all there in front of my eyes.

I can’t even begin to wonder how parents explain these horrible events to their young children.  Yes, life is scary, and I think this world is becoming more and more frightening as the years go by.  But as a writer, one needs to keep an open mind, not to judge too quickly.  I love being able to look at everyone’s point of view, to try and understand how others see the world, where they’re coming from; what their mindset is.  I don’t want to be anyone’s judge and jury.  I want to learn about things; how they work, how they sound, how they feel.  That’s the writer in me.

Yet the fear is growing to the point that I don’t want to look at the news, or read a newspaper anymore.  It sickens and saddens me what others have the ability to do to other human being; the pain that can be inflicted. My heart breaks with those who have lost loved ones to violence.  I weep with those who have lost children, spouses, siblings, parents…but when does it end?

As writers, we need to have topics to write about, to be able to view life through other people’s eyes. We need to grow in our knowledge, and embrace all that life has to offer, whether good or bad.  That’s the sad part, I think, that as a writer, I need to have things to write about.  But I wish, and pray, that there wouldn’t be this horror, and pain, running rampant in society.  I don’t want to see a child wailing the loss of a parent, or a spouse breaking down in tears.

So I hope that the days ahead are brighter for all, not that I’ll be holding my breath.  Writers can be cynics as well, but I can only dream of peace and unity.  What about you?

 

 

 

 

The Monsters Are Not Always Found Under The Bed

It’s funny how watching something briefly on the local news can trigger unpleasant memories from the past.  Some months back I was watching a story on the news involving the late, notorious serial-killer, John Wayne Gacy.  And suddenly this brought to mind a deep and inconsolable sadness for the victims’ families.  First, the agony of not knowing what happened to their loved one, and then the horrifying discovery that their loved one had been gruesomely murdered.

When I was a child, my overly protective parents lovingly reassured me that there was no such thing as the boogeyman.  Nothing sinister was lurking within the dark recesses of my closet.  There weren’t any monsters beneath my bed, waiting for me to fall asleep before pouncing on my helpless body during the dead of night.  I would nod with false bravado, yet confident in my parent’s comforting words that I would awake to live another day.

Yet for the young victims of this very real monster, the boogeyman had indeed become real.  Not some imagined creature with blood-dripping fangs, but all fleshed out before them.  That reality, for the victims, went far beyond the common night-time fears, but came barreling down the tracks into the realm of sheer, unspeakable terror.

I shuddered to think what those young men and boys had to suffer through, and then to be buried in a humiliating mass grave beneath this monster’s crawl space.  Gacy had promised them things; drugs, liquor.  But what they found instead was torture and death.

As parents, we warn our children to be wary of strangers.  To never go into someone else’s house unless we are present.  But what if the stranger was kindly looking Mr. Smith who lived next door?  We all know from the news that evil doesn’t always wear a demonic grin on its face.  Sometimes it can be sweet.  Or elderly.  Or even a clown.