Monday, December 5, 2011
Connected For Life
I wanted to share this article with you because it hit home for me. When my life is going through tough times I tend to do just what is brought in this article. I redraw into my own little world.
"Do you find yourself pulling away from others, especially if you've
experienced a crisis or deep disappointment? Maybe the most
difficult thing we can do is to be with people when we don't feel
like being around anybody. We need other people and we'll never
thrive as human beings in isolation.
One woman likes to say, "Laugh and the world laughs with you. Cry
and you cry with your girlfriends." The presumption is that men are
not empathetic, and there is probably some truth there.
But I meet with a small group of men that challenge that assertion.
We meet for one reason only - to support each other in our life
journeys. We ask embarrassing questions like, "How is it with your
soul?" And, "How are you REALLY doing?" We try to answer honestly
and to share what is good in our lives, but also relate what is not
going well. Where possible, we try to admit our failings in a
situation as well as what we think we may be doing right. We use
each other for a reality check, for support and, of course, for
It's the only group in my life where I can be totally honest and
know that they will accept me anyway. We meet only to listen to each
other, support one another and, if need be, to occasionally
challenge one another. The point is - we need each other.
A man who lost his wife to cancer found himself wanting to be alone.
In time he dropped out of his worshiping community and curtailed
all of the activities he and his wife had shared for so many years.
He increasingly kept to himself. He quit socializing at work and
returned straight home to an empty house. He turned down invitations
from friends and co-workers. His leisure time was now spent watching
television or working in his shop in the basement.
His contact with people dwindled until friends became alarmed that
he might live out his life as a recluse. One came by to visit and to
invite him over for supper the next evening. The two old friends sat
in comfortable chairs by a warm fireplace. The visitor extended the
dinner invitation and encouraged him to come. "You may need to allow
others to share your pain."
The man responded that he figured he was better off without being
around other people. After all, others only seemed to remind him of
all he had lost. "And besides," he said, "it's just too difficult to
get out anymore."
They sat in silence for a while, watching the wood burn in the
fireplace. Then the visitor did an unusual thing. He took tongs from
a rack by the fireplace, reached into the fire, pulled out a flaming
ember and laid it down by itself on the hearth. "That's you," he
The men sat in silence watching the red-hot ember. It slowly lost
its glow. Neither man looked away as the once-hot coal gradually
transformed into a crusty, black lump. After some moments, the
widower turned to his companion and said, "I get the message, my
friend. I'll be over tomorrow evening."
We cannot survive in any healthy way by ourselves. The leaf needs
the branch. The branch needs the trunk. The trunk needs the roots.
And the roots need the rest of the tree. We are connected. And in
that connection we find life and vitality."
-- Steve Goodier
Steve has produced a free newsletter since 1999. It is about life, love and laughter. http://www.lifesupportsystem.com Please check it out.
Hope you enjoyed this article. Please leave a comment.