It's About Them

Young People … Our Greatest Resource

The Will to Carry On

My 33-year-old son got a troubling phone call last week. His best friend in high school had wrapped himself in plastic in the cab of his pickup … then ended his life with a shotgun.

It was interesting to hear how the funeral of a person who felt so hopeless was so largely attended that it took an hour and a half for the attendees to file by the casket.

What would have to happen for a person to feel so bad that not living another day, another hour, another minute would sound like the best plan? The emotional pain would have to be unbearable. Such a person would not be in their rational mind. 

And consider the pain of his parents. These are GOOD and decent people; I know them. How would you EVER get past grief like this? 

It’s hard to imagine, isn’t it? Even under the worst of it, the vast majority of us would find a way to keep on keeping on. 

But that in no way means it wouldn’t be difficult … incredibly difficult. 

This all stood in contrast to me when I stepped into a convenience store near my hotel here in Knoxville. The lady behind the counter was white-headed, bent and stooped. She was 75 if she was a day. But she had an infectuous spirit and a smile and a way with customers that had to make her boss KNOW she could never be compensated for the value she brought.

I don’t know why she was still working; there might have been a good reason.  And there might even be some folks who would resent her filling a job that could go to a young worker. But, frankly, she was doing it ten times BETTER than most folks young enough to be her grandkids.

Joy oozed from this woman. I managed to even get a little of it on me.

And I was better for it.

James Sutton, Psychologist

October 15, 2007 - Posted by | adversity, Counselors, Educators, family, Inspirational, Self-esteem | , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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