Wednesday, June 3, 2015

When You Can't Even See Their Shoes

When I first moved to Bristol I met a woman who drove me crazy. She was everything I was not: tall, slender, blond, athletic, always well-dressed and made up, always, when I saw her, sunny and cheerful. I schlepped around in blue jeans by choice, but that didn't stop me from envying her.

Then I found out that her children were dying of a rare progressive genetic disease.
Then her children did die.

I hated the envy I'd felt. I'd made judgements about her while only knowing a very small part of what it was like to walk in her shoes. In fact, I hadn't even noticed her shoes.

I'd like to say this experience mad me a better person but the jury's still out on what kind of person I am. I will say, however, that it's kept me from being righteously publically vocal about people who are different from me, even if that difference is fundamental and strange. I know, always, that I haven't yet looked at their shoes.