My week: respite, love, hate, apathy & home

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Hate is an ugly, divisive energy. So is apathy – sitting idly by and watching those actively hating others while not doing anything to defend the target of hatred.

Love is a precious, gentle yet powerful, energy. With love, there is no apathy – one doesn’t sit idly by not sharing the gift that is love. It is given freely, nearly demanding it be given away in its radiance.

Misunderstandings are part of life, but it is the mature, measured response to first clarify intent before delving headlong into hate-filled responses.

          *         *          *          *          *

This past week, Brendan Bjorn spent the week away in respite. I missed him terribly, yet at the same time, I knew I needed the break from the complex, all consuming caring 24/7. I knew Declan also needed my undivided attention. We had fun. We ran errands. We attended medical appointments that had been put off for far too long. And then we had more fun.

But still, there was a hint of guilt as I let myself accept that if felt good not to have to do that complex and all consuming care. So, the week was, in a way, bittersweet…as is much of this journey. 

This morning, a slow and relaxing Sunday, Brendan Bjorn is back in his own bed and the house is again as it should be – full of immeasurable and unconditional love. There is no hate to be found in these walls. There is only love. And that feels amazing. It’s as if I am once again whole. My world is back as it should be. My little family together again.

I started out this piece talking about hate and apathy. Odd topic for one of my blogs, I realise. I did this because social media is rife with hate and apathy lately and it’s becoming stifling. It’s overwhelmingly sad and disappointing. If it wasn’t for the connections to so many specials needs families also on this journey, for the advocacy work I do around this area, and for it being how I can interact with the world outside of my door, I would leave social media today.

Some day, I will leave it behind. But for today, I’ll remain.

I need to learn how to become more apathetic, believe it or not, toward those who hate and toward those who are apathetic when those that hate dole out their hatred on others. I need to learn to ignore, is what I’m really saying. To not soak it in emotionally. But, if I do that, will I, too, grow as cold as those who hate? I don’t want that to happen. So, a fine balance must be found.

I first moved to Ireland a very long 24 years ago. I was young, single, no children, and fell in love with the sense of community and caring. I built friendships that to this very day remain strong. I’ve loved here, I’ve lost loves here, and I’ve grown here. I’ve been right and I’ve been wrong here. I’ve received greatly and given greatly…or at least, I hope I have. I’ve tried. I will continue to try. Sometimes I speak out too much. Sometimes I’ve not said enough. Sometimes I’ve been misunderstood. Other times I’m the one who has misunderstood. This is all the nature of this journey called life.

I am an immigrant in Ireland who has recently, and again, received hate for being such in the increasingly intolerant world that is social media. And, I’ve seen others sit by with apathy as the hurtful hate is doled out. But I’m learning, slowly, that the words of hate, the accusations and lies, actually say far more about those who spew the vitriol than it does about me. Even at this age, there is always learning to be had. And I am thankfully learning.

I’m also reminded that life is too damn short. It is priceless. It is fleeting and messy and beautiful and painful and joyful. I don’t have time for the hate. I don’t have time for the apathy. I don’t have time for blind judgments without seeking understanding.

I – indeed, we – only have time for love.

Those two boys down the hallway from me right now?
They are what matters. Full stop.

 

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