15 September 2006

"Life goes on," she said, "that's how you know it's real..."

Life goes on...

Most of us face a tragedy sometime in our lives, and some of us suffer a string of unfortunate events.

Therein lies the difference. If we understand that physical death happens to everyone, and a great lot of people endure divorce, estranged family, abusive parents, and professional failure, we are ahead of the game and chose to single out one thing as "the tragedy" that may or may not define our life.

Or we focus on the seemingly long line of really bad things that seem to keep happening, and descend into drugs, alcohol, anger, bitterness-if we don't kill ourself or the neighbours, we make those around us kinda-sorta (but not really) wish we would seriously consider euthanasia over making everyone else so damn miserable.


Fact is (and trust me, I am old enough to have a worthy opinion) that we ALL suffer several tragedies in each lifetime. The difference between picking just one to call "the tragedy" or calling our life a never ending stream of 'bad karma' is in the viewing. And our choice makes ALL the difference.

Real tragedy is 9/11 and 3/11 and 7/7. New York. Madrid. London.

Real tragedy is Lebanon, Israel, Darfur, Palestine, Iraq.

Real tragedy is leaving the house confident in the babysitter's skills-only to find police, ambulance, and fire rescue vehicles blocking the driveway and the street upon your return.

They are there because the babysitter simply did not understand that leaving an eighteen month old on the pool deck "for a second" is wrong. But it is too late-your toddler is dead.

This kind of tragedy happens every day somewhere in America and with horrifying frequency in the summertime.

But not this year in Phoenix. The entire swim season-start to finish-passed with not one single child drowning.

This miracle happened because when the above referenced infant died his parents chose individual views of the tragedy. Heartbroken, and inconsolable, the mother developed a substance abuse habit that no doubt was the final straw in a shattered family. The father, on the other hand, decided to make the sorts of changes that might have saved his little one, if only someone before him had made changes...

Perspective, the difference.

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