In 2011, I had just quit teaching, officially, when I went back to share my story with the current students. I don’t write anything down, I just share. I believe whatever it is I am supposed to share, as far as details, God will lead me. This particular day I shared the part of my story about having a biological mom that was a heroin addict. As I was preparing to leave the school for the afternoon, a student stopped me. She said that she also had a mother that was a drug addict and that she was also given up for adoption. She thought she was the only one and that no one else knew the pain that she felt inside. Nope. I did.
You see, not everyone has went through what you have went through. For instance, I can’t relate to being abused or having divorced parents. However, not everyone can relate to being adopted. Someone needs to hear your story. Someone needs to know they are not alone.
We see the outside. We see what people show us. We see with our human eyes and ‘think’ we know what’s going on behind closed doors. We think we know.
Did you know that the young, pretty girl in the back of the room that acts obnoxious in class was sexually abused by her cousin when she was 6?
Or how about the kid that comes to school everyday but doesn’t actually do anything; therefore, failing all their classes….did you know that he is being abused at home and he comes to school just to not be at home?
We say things like, ‘they are from a bad neighborhood, it’s no wonder.’ ‘They don’t have good parents.’ Blah, blah, blah.
Okay, how about the beautiful girl who gets straight A’s, is actively involved socially, comes from a well to do family but feels overwhelmed with pressure from her parents to ‘succeed’ and be the best….that inside she feels she isn’t good enough and never will be. She smiles all of the time. She acts like life is great. She hides her personal torment.
Maybe you believe you can’t relate because you are an adult? Ok, did you notice the lady sitting by herself at church? Did you notice her tears? Did you ever think – does she have a husband? Why is she alone? Oh, she smiles and says hi to you every Sunday- did you know it’s a big act and she thinks she is a horrible wife and mother?
Did you know that the nurse who so lovingly cares for you at your doctor’s office is at her ropes end? She feels utterly depressed, cries herself to sleep at night, and has tried counseling and medication and nothing works. Did I tell you she goes to church every Sunday with a smile on her face?
Starting today. Let’s be real. Let’s treat other how we would want to be treated. Let’s change our perspective and understand that we don’t really know what is going on in people’s lives, BUT that we care and don’t want them to feel alone.
Lord, let us have compassionate eyes and a softened heart.