Monday, November 24, 2014

The Sickness Paradox

A very interesting thing happens when you are sick, or really in a hard situation.  If you choose to allow people into your situation you begin to experience the immense care individuals are able to have for our fellow human beings.  I have noticed this in my own life and in my cousins.  Recently my cousin was diagnosed with leukemia.  Both of us have been amazed by the amount of people who reach out to us when disaster strikes.  The paradox is that in the worst time of our lives we get to experience some of the best things.  

We tend to keep to ourselves most of the time.  Sure we seem friendly but our enthusiastic "hi how are you"s are really just formalities.  The honest truth is most of the time we don't actually want to know how you are.  We are usually too busy with our own lives to take the time to care.  We are constantly dropping the "let's hang out sometimes", but these are thrown about with little care as to whether we really have the intentions of planning a time to actually get together.  This is the sad truth of our society.  We have become so busy and wrapped up in our own lives we have lost a sense of true community.  

When you a sick however, it all changes.  Suddenly people are calling actually wanting to know how you are.  People come out of the wood work taking the time to let us know they are thinking and/or praying for us.  Friends show up out of the blue to spend time with us or help us out.  Our neighbors or coworkers who we rarely communicate with are suddenly offering to make us food or help us take care of daily life tasks.  

It is a truly wonderful experience to feel so loved and connected to so many.  It is a shame however, that such an amazing way to live only tends to happen when disaster strikes.  It is time we stop having to face hard times to simply feel the love from fellow humans.  We were made to love each other.  Let's put an end to the isolation our culture has created.  

Next time you are about to ask a person how they are, ask yourself if you really want to know, if you do then proceed with the questions.  You may get a simple fine, try to follow up if this is the case. (What's happening in your life?, Fine good or fine just okay?,  How come?, Etc.). If you answer this question be honest share how you really are.  The next time you made too much food for dinner rather than simply freezing it see if a neighbor want some or better yet invite them over.  Ditch the "we need to hang out" saying and instead be more specific, " want to get coffee on Tuesday?"  
It will be tough at first but I believe that slowly we can change our lives to be more connected with others.  Who knows it could even end up changing our world!  (Yes I know that's kind of Cheesie but if we each focus on doing our part it may just happen!) Plus sharing life with others, even if it is just a few people, is an amazing feeling! You might just get addicted!

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