This past week I had an opportunity to speak with two different freshman classes at FHSU and I centered my talk around the very simple concept of saying "hello". As I walk across campus, I greet everyone with a simple hello, good morning, etc. It's not rocket science. I make eye contact and speak.
Here's how it works.
1. I see the oncoming person.
2. I make eye contact.
Somewhere, someone is waking up this morning wondering if it will ever go away. The pain, the empty, the fear, the longing, the... The endless list. Not I or anyone can promise you it will. The combination of the above can and often takes the living to the brink of death.
The fine line, the tipping point of survival. I've leaned over it's edge, to convince within it's got to be better never achieved. I can't hold you, I can't begin to convince you, all I can do is show you with the thought you may be watching.
Aberrant is defined as: departing from the right, normal, or usual course. 2. deviating from the ordinary, usual, or normal type; exceptional; abnormal.
Am I exceptional or abnormal? I've asked myself this very question many times since Blake's death or after the experience of my second divorce. In one breath, living in my car to gather my brain appeared to many as abnormal, yet as I exhale I see the strength in even taking the first step to do such a thing.
In my mind, I'm neither. I'm simply me.
If profanity bothers you, read no further.
I spent my entire day on yesterday working on my home restoration project on West 17th. I would say that 98% of the day was done without a radio playing. The only distrations I encountered were the occasional visitor or a trip to the lumberyard. I enjoyed the time and smells of construction thru and thru.
This morning, I had the opportunity to walk over to the FHSU Memorial Union and speak to a group of middle and high school students who are on campus for a conference. The title of my 30 minute time to talk was "Live it". I meandered a bit aimlessly this morning, a general idea of what I was going to say.
Have you ever slept in your car while it was raining? I remember driving south out of Washington State I found a nice little spot to park for the night and rain moved in. I laid there looking up at my side windows watching the raindrops run down my window.
The drops would begin as one, partner with another, than another and yet another. A single raindrop, slowly sliding down would gain more and more momentum as it gathered other drops. It would reach a point it was no longer meandering, but on a mission.
I'm guessing six months have passed since hearing the name Steve Fugate. I'm not sure who told me but I remember them saying that he was this super inspirational guy who was walking back and forth across the country and was doing it because of the death of his children.
Maybe it did register, but honestly I really don't think it did. Not because I don't care, my only explanation is that my own life has been so darn busy. Traveling, teaching, renovating, life. A guy named Steve is walking across the country, that is amazing but...
I had mentioned in a FB post that Taylor came home last eveing and asked me "is it possible to become a better person and if so, how do you achieve it?" This was a question posed to her and classmates at the university. Taylor and I sat and discussed it in detail.
This is what I believe. There was a time, not sure exactly when, but there was a time when I would have answered this with an absolute YES. I was a different person then, not a lesser, just less experienced.
This has been on my mind all day, so here goes.
Last night I posted an article written by Ashley Davis Bush. The article is below if you didn't see it.
This really struck home with me, it's not perfect but it's about as close as it can get. Each point in the article could be summarized in my journey in percentages.
1. Grief is a normal reaction.