An update on my broken heart.
My heart’s been battered and beaten so many times that somedays I feel like it just won’t ever stop bleeding. But it does. It always does. Because the smallest thing, the tiniest of gestures, even when your heart is so weakened, can be mended with hope so easily. That’s what happened to me today.
Why is my heart so shattered? My goodness, it’s so many things, isn’t it? I don’t want to generalize too much but the umbrella of it all is just a tough 2020 that is sort of still bleeding into 2021. I told a friend yesterday on zoom: “I’m just so disenchanted with the human spirit. I don’t know how else to say it.”
That kind of encapsulates it.
From the strange ridiculousness that has become the GOP to the outright hate being thrown towards Asian-American and our Jewish-American brothers and sisters recently…don’t get me started with why Black Lives Matter even exists… I just don’t understand when it all stops. When did we as human beings learn to differentiate each other by our looks? By our religion?
We hate each other because of how we were born? When did we decide that grouping people and hating them was a thing we should do?
Serious question: Is that innate to our species? Is it?
This is going to be the absolute dumbest of all parallels, but I can’t help but think about, do any other species do this weird thing? Like do German Shepherds look at Bichon Frise’s and just hate on them for being too white, fluffy and small or whatever? I’m sure there’s a Sociologist out there who has a better more intelligent way of asking this question, but it just boggles my mind that we humans intentionally hate each other for things we have no control over. I was born Black and Latina. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t change a damn thing about myself, but my goodness, the amount of hatred over the color of my skin for my entire life is exhausting, but also, it’s just so damn stupid! Absolutely, mindboggling stupid! Period. Think about it. The color of my skin scares people? The color. Not, who I am or what I do for a living, but the color. I’m telling you, when I look at all the things going on in the world, I’m not even angry anymore – I’m just embarrassed for us as a species. We truly are so pathetic with the amount of hate and fear we have for one another over the dumbest thing possible…
I know, I know… this sounds like a twelve-year-old screaming. Yeah. That’s okay. I’ll embrace that analogy because it’s how I feel. I feel so frustrated, so angry and so helpless to fix all of it. I’m completely confused by how a cop – can brutally hurt a man, or watch a man be hurt and killed and not intervene – my good Lord, not even try to help. I don’t understand how we see an elderly person struggling on by to cross the street and not one car stops to let them walk on by – no one even offers to help. We see a man who we assume is Jewish and because there’s conflict in another country, we gang up on him and beat him up? WHAT? How does that make any sense at all?
When did we become these horrible compassionless beings? Is this who we’ve always been? Is this who we are?
I’m so heart-broken by what we’ve become that I’ve just decided we are a pathetic lot… we really have become a sad sort in comparison to the rest of the species on the planet.
And then, out of no-where, a glimmer of hope – just when I needed it.
On top of everything else that’s been going on, I’ve also been suffering from an old injury that ultimately ended my dreams of dancing on Broadway years ago. I will eventually get surgery so I can walk normally again – but suffice it to say, I’ve been limping and in some physical pain for most of 2020 and all of 2021 so far. But today, as I left the grocery store with my cart, struggling to put my groceries into my car, I started the trek to put the grocery cart back in the cart racking area (I don’t know what to call it). Clearly, I was in pain, limping but it was nothing that I hadn’t been feeling all these months now. A young man, a white young man, on a skateboard going by the parking structure on the sidewalk, saw me and stopped quick. He flipped his skateboard onto his hand (pretty impressive actually) and came straight over to me, grabbed the cart and said matter-of-factly, “I got this ma’am.” He returned the cart to its proper place, threw his skateboard back on the ground, jumped on and waved good-bye and went on his way.
It was such a simple thing really. Maybe a minute or so total. A kind gesture. It showed such a wealth of integrity and loveliness that I needed to see. I needed to remember the best parts of the human spirit.
Whoever that child was, a “Gen-Zer” for sure, he was raised right. And I’m so grateful, not just for the kind gesture on this part, but also for the reminder – there’s still good out there. Maybe we all need to do more of it and acknowledge it in our everyday lives. It’s real hard not to be so disappointed in humanity, but it feels real good to be reminded of who we can be.
Heart mended. Thank goodness, I still have hope…