I thought I’d speak to another level of resolutions, as the idea of new beginnings for a new year gels for many. I’d originally posted this last spring, but I can’t help thinking the winds of change in progress means looking at the world and our place in it a little more – and that maybe helping people is in itself a full enough belief system…
It would be crushing to write another Dejah story. Despite the privilege of being able to write about it, I wish there’d never been a Dejah Milne story in the first place. At least not the way it had to be written because otherwise the right story would say that his mother, father, and sister are still able to hold him and hug him whenever they want.
They’d be able to laugh with him, instead of at videos of his silly fun from days not so long gone by. They would be able to hear his ‘I love you too’s with his voice. They’d get to be angry with him for messing up the house, or coming home too late, or maybe denting the car’s bumper. I know they’d rather that kind of everyday eye-rolling frustration instead of coping with the anguish of his absence now, because at age 13 years, he wasn’t able to overcome the tumour that he’d carried for 10 years.
I don’t want to write those stories if it can be helped at all. I don’t know anyone who does. The problem is, that the problems that end with those stories aren’t finished yet. There are so many issues that need someone to stand up for them and in support of the cavalcade of teams who work tirelessly to end them once, and honestly for all.
These are the teams of people who have been called, or sometimes brutally and harshly forced, at a spirit level, to take charge in the parts of life that are painful, agonizing, hideous, and terrifying. That’s heroics.
They are thrown toward the front lines to take on the darkness for us. They stand and push as far as they can to get answers to the challenges that debilitate or outright steal loved ones from us. They strive to make our world better, easier, more livable.
They need little from anyone else when it’s all put into perspective. They’ve already taken on the heavy end of the fight. They’re slogging, sweating, bleeding, and crying so that the rest of us get to hang back and throw out what we are able, when we can even as, just like us, they still have to navigate the trials of everyday life.
They ask for our help, but not for things like go earn a science degree or a doctorate, or to put our lives on the line, or to organize any kind of effort beyond our ability.
Those calls are usually only pleas to be heard, for us to see what is happening, and they ask us to spend the least of what we wish to. Then they call us ‘their heroes’ for giving that bit.
Let’s get real please; they aren’t really asking for our heroics. They are asking us to share only a little of our resources to sustain their herculean efforts for our sake.
It doesn’t matter how we acknowledge that they’ve been heard. Spend your hour of time. Send your $2, $20, or your $20,000,000 if you can. Send your willingness to walk, run, dance, fast, drive, stand, or create, but whatever you do, please do not ignore these direct calls to your own soul. This is the least we can do, literally.
Look, whatever we choose to support today is directly connected to whatever is to be resolved tomorrow and in the issues in the days after that. Start by choosing one, any one cause that made you turn your face toward it for even a minute. We can all help another mother, father, son, brother, daughter and sister not have to spend another day in fear and grief. That’s kind of heroic, right?