Breaking common conception. Shoot the stereotype.

When looking out, we can not see through the eyes of other people or know what demons they have slain, how good or bad the journey has been for them.

Do I need to know their past to accept that they can understand intrinsically what I or another is going through?

No, it helps make us less embarrassed, ashamed or scared to share things if we know that those who are listening have some experience/knowledge with our situation and are not looking down on us…for whatever reason.

One of the things that isolates us from help, or possible friendship, is shame, fear, embarrassment and stigma.

I was talking to one of my counselors this week and something she had not realized, even though she did say that when she revealed she had been conned out of a small amount of money to co-workers in a meeting, some people looked at her differently, as if she was kinda stupid.  However, when I pointed out that in today’s world 9 times out of 10, people admire the person that stole the money or whatever…they kinda smile and say clever devil (or something along those lines) while looking at you as if it was your fault.

It’s something that people do as for some reason they admire the not Robin Hood con artists and cheats.

After all, we all like to think and say that we are smart and not likely to get “taken in” by anyone.

How much of looking down at the victim is from that little desire to be superior to someone else?  How much is admiration for a liar, cheat and confidence artist?

How about we change the stereotype a little, Robin Hood these people are not.

The devastation they cause is more than anything you have seen portrayed on Television.

You likely won’t hear it because the victims are looked down on, and the criminal is admired.

Somehow, that view needs to change…and the crime needs to be looked on as what it is.

Destroying people’s lives.

But then that is just my viewpoint.

About time we support the victim and berate the crook, instead of admire their clever skills.

 

 

 

Rinse and watch someone else repeat.

You ever get into a mess, a big one, and whether someone else got you there (as in my case) or circumstances made a shambles of things, even maybe you just charged forth into the valley of 300 foibles without thinking it through and…

…well isn’t this one FINE mess?

I know how I got into my mess, well most of it, and I know now that there were other ways of handling my circumstances but at the time, when your IN the quagmire most of us are not stepping back and thinking logically.

My predicament aside, as I will write about that in future should I ever get the courage, it seems that once people know you have been through something, they seem to think you are an expert on that particular circumstance.

I am here to say, that is not always the case.

After all I was shot at once and I would be just as clueless and stuck to the ground if it happened today as I was then.

A former ex tried to strangle me, and I have not taken self defense courses so, I would be just as hapless should that ever be repeated (not if I can help it).

Con folk stole everything I had and got me into a foreign country, okay, on this one I am a little more knowledgeable.

So someone else is in a foreign country, brought there by someone they trusted and were in a relationship with, and they too have no money, freedom and well they are kinda screwed…slight adjustment in circumstances and physical situation.

When you think your faux pas or conundrum is a singular event, not experienced by anyone else, well I realize now that it is a bit big headed.  There are still things that happen to people that are indeed singular and original but that is in itself exceptional and rare.

Other people at some point in time have gone through something akin to what you are or did, slight nuances of difference taken into consideration, and well the outcomes are probably as varied as each of us are as individual human beings.

So when someone asked me for advice for this person who is stuck in a foreign country, no money, no family with money,surrounded by people who do not care or actively got you there and dislike you, with pets that they can’t bear to leave…

…I understand from experience, what they are going through.

54 days ago the people who put me in a similar situation after taking everything I had, including my identity, threatened to slit my throat, and the world was in turmoil.

53 days ago I boarded a plane and arrived back in my own country an emotional, psychological, financial and physical mess.

They managed to take everything I had and I ended up with nothing.

Yesterday a friend contacted me because she was aware of what I went through, and now someone else is going through something similar, in my country.

Well now there is a conundrum.

I still have not worked through everything but my counselor is amazing and very good at seeing things that I did or do not, though I do not need anyone to tell me how lucky I am now, I made it out with my dog.

There is still a woman, in Canada, who is broke, has diabetes, no family to pay for her return to America, no health care, and the person that brought her to Canada (unsure if it was a sponsor or what) is now saying they are broke and can’t even pay for her return to the states with her pets.

Alas I am still broke myself and looking for a place to live, and the basic necessities so I am not much help in financial ways.

I have made suggestions but the person living through any particular hell has to actually take the steps to DO or SEEK things to help them out of the circumstance they are in.

When one is on the edge of a cliff, looking into avast abyss of darkness without a clue of what is below when they step off, many things keep them glued to the mountainside unable to move and fear is rather high on that list, not to relegate shame, embarrassment, vulnerability or helplessness to non existence because they all contribute in their own nefarious major ways, but fear is the bow on the box that needs to be undone first.

My world for a roll of TP. Ok not mine…

…it is someone ELSE stuck in the loo yelling: “Where did all the TP go?”

Well buggered if I know, last I knew there were 8 rolls in there.

Maybe there is a critter that eats TP ?

No, we know who has it, in their bedroom.

It is stashed in there under the tinned food, bags of chips and chocolate bars.

No they were not this bad before but hey, can’t let the odd one out get anything more than…anything.

The fridge is like a map of proprietary territory, with 1 small shelf being a DMZ.

Some people make me wonder.

 

 

In Grama’s Day.

In the years between 1910 and 1912, a family of 5 was thrown from their home, the children sat upon the mattresses in the back lane contemplating their new state of homelessness.

Their father, a man with a weakness for drink, leave them to return to his family who are well off, with a dairy, lands and money.

The mother and children are unwelcome by his family, and end up in a workhouse.

In the years between 1910 and 1912 the middle daughter (my grandmother) and her 3 year old brother, were sent to Canada by Dr Barnardo’s to…a new family.

They did not wish to go, after all the mother and older sister were still with them even if the father and his family wished them to go. Even with tales of fruit you could pick off the trees on the side of the road and gold findable in the streams they still did not wish to go.

Their arrival to the “new world” was met with much disillusionment and for the girl age 12 it was more the life of a slave to do chores, sleep in the barn and grow up without knowing the family she loved.

My grandmother lived to be 105 years old, through some of the hardest times possible, and she herself went through something akin to what I am…twice.

My grandmother never forgave the people that sent her to the “new world” and would spend a lot of time listening to the audio book “Little Immigrants” whispering that it was worse than that but…”listen to it and you will understand a little”.

To the day she died she wondered what became of her mother, older sister (who she never heard from again)  and younger brother, who she lost track of during the war.

I imagine what she would tell me today, if we could talk.

She would not be happy to know that there is just me left, but then perhaps her going before the rest was  a kindness.

She deserved a lot of those.

Happy New Year

If how horrible and depressed I feel right now is as good as this year will be, please forgive me for desiring to opt out.

As bad as my situation is, this evening leaves me sadder because tonight is, for many, a fun and lively night.

One friends family lost a son this evening.

One friend is laying in hospital, and everyone knows she has but a day or two left.

Another friend is going in for surgery in a couple weeks (cancer) and is not sure she will see the year out.

No phone rang with well wishes for the New year for me.

No one needed or wanted to hear my voice or know my thoughts.

I am left with the memory of a time when, despite having very little besides each other, and our pets, at least there was someone that wanted to hear me say Happy New Year, and give me a hug.

Perhaps that is as good as it will ever be, those moments that are in the fog of memory, at least they existed, once upon a time.

May everyone make it home safely this evening.

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 2. The Crux Of Alternate Realities.

Nothing I am thinking is new to many, but for some it might be, as for me it was.

Everyone has had a time (or they will have) where a situation occurs and what you consider to be the only response or action to take, is not thought of the same by someone else.

I made the mistake of thinking that this was a singular instance of divergent core belief or priorities.

I should have seen it as the way of the world.

We were living on the farm, 360 acres of farmland with bush, and we had 4 dogs.  I was alone, as of the age of 12 I spent most of my time alone on the farm but that is yet another post for another day if I ever get brave enough.

The parents were at work, 100 miles away, and as they worked in the city we really did not have community ties (they were not the type to bother with neighbors and community).

On this fine sunny afternoon, knowing I would be alone till the next morning as usual, I opened the door to go outside and do chores and found the stoop covered in blood.  It is a shock, it’s like everything stops for a moment and then you feel fear, because something is so wrong.

I love animals, I guess being agoraphobic, I have spent more time with them than people.

My first actual thought was to find what was hurt, and I started calling the dogs.

It took a couple minutes but they came and one of them, a beautiful golden coated mixed breed shep/lab/collie, had her throat cut.

I was 14, my first thought was bring her into the house, and call mom at work.

Now my mom was an amazing woman, she was very quick and to the point – pour flour on it. Pack it with flour and keep packing it until the blood cakes and stops flowing.

So there I was in the kitchen packing flour onto her neck, crying and saying those stupid little prayers that she be okay.

That is when the older half brother showed up with his fiance.  I remember that feeling of help is here, it will be okay.

This was the moment when the divergence hit me.

This church going former military older half sibling, refused to take the dog to the nearest vet.

Instead he went to my room to sleep with his girlfriend and mom had to drive all the way home to take her to the vet, while I waited for her, tending to the dog and trying to keep hysteria at bay.

I was shocked at him because not taking her to the vet was not even an option in my mind, and I could not understand how this person could be that way.

He went to church but his first love was money, and his excuse was he was not paying for it (obviously not an issue as mom was taking her anyway) and well it would dirty his Toyota half ton so his citified fiance (a cousin via the step dad) would have issues sitting in it.

Et voila.

Divergent realities, different core values and morals.

The dog lived a long and happy life.

It is a lesson I wish I had remembered.

What we think is an automatic responsible moral response to a situation, may not even be considered by someone else.

In fact some people can’t even spell empathy much less feel it, and the only time they notice another person is to see what they can get out of them…something even now I can not quite fathom.

If I could maybe this would make sense.

Chapter 1. Why I Appreciate Police.

I have always tried to be a good person and see the best in others, even when people said I was wrong and being too kind.

Guess I figured I should treat others as I would wish to be treated, see them as I would hope to be seen.

I discovered early on that there are many types of people in the world.

It’s not to say I did not get hurt, beaten, neglected, but that is not what this post is about.

Via my job I encountered people who were from all walks of life, they could be in a rush, hurt, upset, lost, angry, drunk, stoned and in need of assistance that only the police could give.

When someone swore at me, I would say thank you, and in the pause that usually followed my words I would suggest that  we discuss what the problem was. After all, I understood they were very upset and usually the surprise of my response allowed them to focus on the problem, not their anger.

The response they expected was not the one they got…sometimes that calmed them down and sometimes it did not.

The point was, it was not me that they were mad at, so taking it personal was normal but hardly helpful.

All the things I saw made me admire how the Police can cross all the boundaries of the various realities and deal with people in situations and circumstances, as best they can.

I am not saying all Cops are perfect and handle everything perfectly, because they are human, and again that is something to be thankful for as this allows them to treat people humanely, with care and consideration despite all the crap that they see.

How hard is it to do that, when they know what people are capable of?

Looking around I find myself wondering how they do it, when people can seem so normal, but their thinking is shaped by a very different sense of reality.

Not sure I will trust anyone ever again.