I fancy myself a writer and therefore an observer of the human condition. It’s my nature to wonder why and explore the options, often painstakingly, in my head then let those thoughts spill from my mind to written word. One of the most puzzling parts of the human experience is how we can speak so freely when expressing discontent yet remain silent on the flip side.
It is said that we are all driven by one of two forces: Love and Fear. Is the comfort of Fear — lashing out wildly to strike the first blow or to encase one’s heart in cement so it won’t get hurt — that much more appealing than the vulnerability of Love?
It must be. And that is life’s tragedy. So often we wait until the end is near, or even passed us by, to allow light to escape thru a crack in the wall around our truest selves. How often have I seen a friend kneel before a coffin and offer forgiveness for the long lost person who lay inside of it? How often have I seen a friend clutch the hand of another and say with a lump in their throat…I wish I told you…or I thought you knew…. How often have I been that person on my knees or the one with tears cascading down my cheeks?
It is on days like this that the reminder that time runs out faster than you realize sucker punches us in the gut. So many stories of lovingly desperate last words said before their lives were stolen.
Then as I was watching the relentless Hurricane Irma coverage yesterday and Hurricane Harvey the weeks before, I noticed something. The mighty and study oaks fell hard when tested by the stress of the storms that blew in and created their own destruction in addition to the storms as they came down. The tireless work of clearing their destruction will carry on long after the storm is gone. While in silent contrast, the delicate and graceful palm trees swayed and bent when they were tested by a historically fierce storm. They came out not quite the same way they went in…but they survived and they did not make the damage from the uncontrollable tempest worse. They will continue to live and grow during the recovery. And the irony of life’s full circle, the palm trees of the World Financial Center were almost all that stood 16 years ago today in their graceful defiance of the chaotic horror surrounding them.
Getting older and (hopefully) wiser as I continue my keen writerly observations, I work toward operating from a place of Love more and a place of Fear less and less. It’s hard being human so I think I will try to be more like a palm tree. Being vulnerable makes you strong.
WOW…what a week it’s been so far! We made history in multiple ways. We will continue to do so in the days to come.
As Americans, we have the freedom to express our opinions and engage in discussion when we have a different point of view.
Where else but in America could I, a woman of Hispanic and Jewish discent, pour my thoughts out onto this blog then broadcast them to any number of the millions of others out there in cyberspace? My greatgrandmother Lily was denied the opportunity to read or write when she grew up in Europe. It was useless to educate a female…let alone a Jewish girl. Oh my…how far our bloodline has flowed with her arduous journey to America!
With all the current passionate disagreement, the one thing we can agree upon is that it is our US Armed Forces that protect that and all other freedoms for all Americans.
Today, please exercise your freedom of speech and thank a Veteran for his or her service.
God bless every soldier, sailor, marine and airman. GOD BLESS AMERICA!
Tunnel Vision. This is one of the key components of depression. It is the disease’s way of not only keeping you in its grips but strengthens its hold on you. The problem (and to the depressed mind that it often oneself) and its misery are the only things that exist.
But that’s not true. There is an entire world that can be drawn upon to help you make your way out. You just have to allow yourself to see it.
Often it feels like an impossible struggle to simply lift your head. Do it anyway. It’s worth it.
Easter is the celebration of the sacrifice. We are reminded that Jesus died for our sins. As a mother, i think i get that. If i could, i would take any punishment to spare my baby girl from suffering. But that is not always a good idea. I think that we need to be willing to face our own sins a little more often and accept their consequences. After all, being human it is a given that we are sinners. Being repentant celebrates humanity. Is there a more noble way to honor the life we have been given than to accept our frailties and find strength in one another for it?
Be kind. Remember, we are all in this life together.
I’VE BEEN HACKED…AGAIN!!! It happened to my friend Joe Meyer last week, this week it’s my turn. Ugh. If you get weird messages, friend requests for a second Judy Cangemi facebook page that looks just like my existing one, emails, texts, etc. from me, DISREGARD AND DELETE!!! Happy Sunday everyone…except the sh*thead that hacked me.
Facebook is an incredible thing. Since I opened my account, I’ve reconnected with people I thought I’d lost forever. I disconnected with people I should have a long time before. And I’ve made many wonderful connections I would never have been able to had it not been for Facebook. One of these connections is with Bill Murray III. Not the Ghostbuster and SNL alum…although he does have a great sense of humor and his mission is to help people exorcise demons; the demons that haunt the victims and survivors of child abuse through the National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse (http://www.naasca.org/).
Bill and I haven’t ever met outside the virtual world. We have a friend in common who posted a personal achievement. There was something about Bill’s comment that intrigued me. I clicked on his name, saw a little bit more about him and requested his friendship. When he graciously accepted, I sent him a message thanking him and for doing the important work he does at NAASCA. I told him that I am a survivor of a variety of forms of childhood abuse. He told me that he is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse as well. And a kinship was formed.
From there, we got to chatting about our paths toward recovery. It’s rarely a straight line and it certainly hasn’t been in my case. But it’s worth it. So much has happened in the past few years, even more in the last few months to impact my recovery process. I could have viewed these events as crippling…and at first they were. instead, I chose to turn them into catalysts in my metamorphosis from victim to survivor. Life is still hard and bad things are inevitable but now more than ever, I believe that life is worth living. Despite my past, I am worthy of happiness in the present and future. It’s there for me, too. Bill asked me to be the special guest speaker on NAASCA’s internet radio show called BlogTalkRadio Stop Child Abuse now (SCAN). Because I’ve found catharsis in shedding the shame attached to the abuse I endured and in my disclosure, other survivors found the courage to share their stories and get the help they’ve needed for so long, I said “yes.” Without hesitation. Without even thinking about it…that’s right, Judy the Over-Thinker said “yes” without giving it any thought.
So that’s how I spent 90 minutes of my Friday night last night; talking about my experience, strength and hope to help myself and other adult survivors of child abuse. The link below will bring you to the entire 90 minute show. Listen if you like. Understandable if you don’t. I didn’t get very graphic but anytime anyone recounts incidents of child abuse, it can be disturbing. Plus…you might not want to know THAT much about me. But you’re welcome to.
If you or anyone you know is an adult survivor of child abuse and want an empathetic person to talk to about it, any of the residual effects or to find out where to get help, please contact me. We’re in this life together.
Thank you Facebook for making the world a little smaller and life a lot better.