Monday Morning Mugshots – October 13, 2014

Fotor0101394023

I am so thankful.

I am thankful for my husband, who is an infinite source of strength, encouragement and love.

I am thankful for my kids. For the one I grew, and the three beautiful surprises I received.

I am thankful for my parents. I haven’t seen my dad for weeks because he is busy harvesting the food he is growing for the world. My mom works long and difficult shifts, taking care of the elderly. “We’ve worked with our backs so our kids can use their minds” was always my dad’s motto. All three of their kids work hard to fulfill this legacy because it is the best way to show our gratitude for their work.

I am thankful for my colleagues, though this word hardly seems appropriate. The word “friends” is presumptuous perhaps, but perhaps this is because throughout my lifetime there have been very few who were “true.” Allies, partners, co-conspirators, dreamers, schemers, confidants in subversion, compatriots in compassion for others… those that recognize the need to jump off shit and kick other shit.

I am thankful for my privilege. Let’s talk about that for a moment. It’s hard to understand and embrace – when you come from having certain things that others still fight for, being cognizant of this dichotomy can be a weird feeling. In trying to unfold all of the ways I am privileged, and all the ways I am better off, all I can do is commit to constantly digging into what this means, and everyday use what I have to do better for others. It is through privilege that I can even say any of this, an expression of my privilege¬†alongside my willingness to learn and give.

“I just miss my boy” weeps Vonderrit Myers Sr, whose 17 year old son was shot and murdered by police. His son was taken from him for reasons unfathomable to me.

Meanwhile, my boy is curled up on the couch beside me, flipping through comic books and singing a Stompin Tom Connors song.

How I wish that the Myers family, and every other family who has lost so senselessly, could feel the comfort of the warm body of their child, the peacefulness of their presence. This should not be a privileged feeling. And yet this morning I feel the sting – that grating discomfort of all that I have held out above what all others should share.

I am so thankful. But I resolve to never be passive.

Let us be grateful for what we have, never allowing complacency to take or withhold it from others. We’ve got a lot of work to do.

For today, reflect. Tomorrow, there is great work to be done. May you be grateful for your own peace, never allowing it to transform into passivity.